5th Islamic Solidarity Games kicks off with Turkish athletes shining

5th Islamic Solidarity Games kicks off with Turkish athletes shining

5th Islamic Solidarity Games kicks off with Turkish athletes shining

The fifth Islamic Solidarity Games, hosting some 4,200 international athletes coming to the Central Anatolian province, has started in Konya, while the Turkish team has bagged 40 medals.

In the first two days of the event, which started with a parade of athletes and a ceremony attended by state officials, Turkish athletes collected 16 gold, 14 silver and 10 bronze medals, maintaining their top position in the games.

Necati Er ranked first in the men’s triple jump with 16.73 meters, while Özlem Becerek won the gold medal with 54.91 meters in the women’s discus final and Nurten Marble came second with 52.85 meters.

Ersu Şaşma, on the other hand, reached the gold with his 5.60-meter jump in the men’s pole vault finals, breaking the record. Ekaterina Guliyev was another to win the gold, finishing the women’s 800 meters finals with a time of 2:02:28.

Yasmani Copello won the silver in the men’s 400m hurdles final with 48.86 seconds. Tuğba Danışmaz also won the silver in the women’s long jump final with 6.34-meter, while Emre Zafer Barnes finished the men’s 100-meter final third with 9.99 seconds, another record but was beaten by Qatari athlete Tosin Ogunode in the next race.

Deniz Dağdelen Görkem Polat and Hatice Kübra İlgün won the silver medal in taekwondo, while Zeliha Ağrıs earned the bronze.

Sevilay Öztürk won the gold medal and Emine Avcu won the bronze in the women’s 50-meter freestyle final in para swimming, while Şevval Beren Mutlu bagged the silver and Meryem Nur Tunuğ came third in the 100-meter breaststroke.

In the men’s 50-meter freestyle final in para swimming, Koral Berkin Kutlu also got the bronze medal.

Neşe Şahin earned the bronze medal in bocce, while the women’s national handball team won both matches in its group and qualified for the semi-finals.

On the other hand, the Turkish men’s national volleyball team defeated Pakistan 3-1 in the first match in the group.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan attended the opening ceremony of the games. “I congratulate all those who contributed to the preparation process for the event on behalf of myself and my nation,” the president said, wishing success to the athletes.

Konya is estimated to host 6,000 people, including more than 4,200 athletes from 56 countries and tens of thousands of sports fans, according to Youth and Sports Minister Mehmet Muharrem Kasapoğlu.

The Islamic Solidarity Games, held every four years, aims to increase social, political, economic, intellectual and cultural cooperation between Islamic countries as well as promote Islamic values, portray national treasures and gain mutual acquaintance, especially for disadvantaged countries.

The games will be accompanied by intellectual panels and discussions that will help to highlight the importance of the games, as well as the benefits it provides, the minister added.