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Afghanistan at the 2016 Summer Olympics

Afghanistan competed at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from 5 to 21 August 2016. The country's participation at Rio de Janeiro marked its fourth consecutive appearance at the Summer Olympics. and thirteenth total. Afghanistan had officially made its debut in 1936 and missed five editions. In the absence of taekwondo fighters, most notably Rohullah Nikpai, Afghanistan failed to earn a single Olympic medal in Rio for the first time since 2004.

Afghanistan at the
2016 Summer Olympics
Flag of Afghanistan.svg
NOCAfghanistan National Olympic Committee
in Rio de Janeiro
Competitors3 in 2 sports
Flag bearerMohammad Tawfiq Bakhshi
Summer Olympics appearances (overview)



Afghanistan had participated in six Summer Olympics between its debut in the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Nazi Germany, and the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The highest number of Afghans to participate at any single Summer Games was 31 in the 1948 Summer Olympics in London, United Kingdom. Afghanistan has won a total of two bronze medals in the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2012 London Olympics respectively, both in Taekwondo.[1]

The Afghanistan National Olympic Committee sent a total of three athletes to the Games, trimming into half of the roster from London 2012. Track sprinters Abdul Wahib Zahiri and Kamia Yousufi received their spots to compete in athletics by wild card entries, while judoka Mohammad Tawfiq Bakhshi was selected to carry the Afghan flag in the opening ceremony.[2]


Afghanistan received universality slots from IAAF to send two athletes (one male and one female) to the Olympics.[3][4] Both athletes made their Olympic debuts, with Zahiri participating in the Men's 100 m event while Yousufi took part in the Women's 100 m. Yousufi, along with Kariman Abuljadayel of Saudi Arabia, both ran their preliminary heats in a full-body kit and hijabs due to their countries' Islamic culture. Despite Yousufi finishing last and not qualifying for the next round, she became Afghanistan's national record holder with 14.02 seconds.[5][6] Zahiri ran his heats in 11.56 seconds and finished seventh, failing to advance to the quarterfinals.[7]

  • Note–Ranks given for track events are within the athlete's heat only
  • Q = Qualified for the next round
  • q = Qualified for the next round as a fastest loser or, in field events, by position without achieving the qualifying target
  • NR = National record
  • N/A = Round not applicable for the event
  • Bye = Athlete not required to compete in round

Track & road events
Athlete Event Heat Quarterfinal Semifinal Final
Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank
Abdul Wahib Zahiri Men's 100 m 11.56 7 Did not advance
Kamia Yousufi Women's 100 m 14.02 NR 8 Did not advance


Mohammad Tawfiq Bakhski represented Afghanistan in men's judo. He received an invitation from the Tripartite Commission to participate in the men's half-heavyweight category (100 kg) event, signifying Afghanistan's second consecutive Olympics with a judoka. Echoing Ajmal Faizzada's result in the previous Olympics, Bakhshi lost in the round of 64 to Jorge Fonseca of Portugal. Fonseca in turn lost the next round to Lukáš Krpálek, who ended up winning the gold medal for the event.[8]

Athlete Event Round of 64 Round of 32 Round of 16 Quarterfinals Semifinals Repechage Final / BM
Mohammad Tawfiq Bakhshi Men's −100 kg   Fonseca (POR)
L 000–100
Did not advance


  1. ^ "Olympic History of Afghanistan". Olympics at Retrieved 14 February 2019.
  2. ^ "The Flagbearers for the Rio 2016 Opening Ceremony". International Olympic Committee. Retrieved 5 August 2016.
  3. ^ " – Top Lists". IAAF. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
  4. ^ "IAAF Games of the XXX Olympiad – Rio 2016 Entry Standards" (PDF). IAAF. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
  5. ^ Suchindran, Aravind (9 July 2017). "Freedom to sprint". Bangalore Mirror. Retrieved 14 February 2019.
  6. ^ "Rio Olympics 2016: Kariman Abuljadayel makes Saudi history in 100m". BBC. 13 August 2016. Retrieved 14 February 2019.
  7. ^ "IAAF: 100 Metres result". Retrieved 14 February 2019.
  8. ^ "Judo – Men's 100 kg". Rio 2016. Archived from the original on 20 August 2016. Retrieved 14 February 2019.

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