2013 Maccabiah Games

The 19th Maccabiah (Hebrew: המכביה התשע-עשרה) were the 19th incarnation of the Maccabiah Games, which took place July 18 to 30, 2013.

19th Maccabiah
The logo for the 19th Maccabiah Games (המכביה ה-19)
Nations participating77[1]
Debuting countries17
Athletes participating7,500[1]
Events490 Medals 34 Sports
Opening cityJerusalem
Opening ceremonyJuly 18, 2013
Closing ceremonyJuly 30, 2013
Officially opened byShimon Peres
Main venueTeddy Stadium
<  18th Maccabiah 20th Maccabiah (2017)  >

The Games brought together 7,500 competing athletes, making it the third-largest international sporting event in the world after the Olympic Games and the FIFA World Cup.[2][3][4] The Maccabiah held competitions in 42 disciplines, in 34 sports.[5] A number of new sports were introduced or brought back, including archery, equestrian, and handball; ice hockey was brought back for the first time since 1997.


The Maccabiah Games were first held in 1932.[6] In 1961, they were declared a "Regional Sports Event" by, and under the auspices and supervision of, the International Olympic Committee.[7][8][9]

Opening ceremony

The opening ceremonies for the 19th Maccabiah took place for the second time at the Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem. The games were officially opened by Shimon Peres. US President Barack Obama greeted the Maccabiah through a prerecorded video.[10] Prime Minister David Cameron also greeted the Maccabiah and Team GB.[11]

During the parade of nations, giant helium balloons with the country the delegation represented accompanied each delegation.[12] Coincidentally, the opening ceremony took place on Nelson Mandela's birthday. The South African delegation carried with them a large banner reading: "Celebrating our legacy – Mandela Day".[13]

U.S. Olympic gold-medal-winning gymnast Aly Raisman lit the Maccabiah cauldron.[14] The opening ceremonies were celebrated with performances by a number of popular musicians, including Rami Kleinstein and Harel Skaat.[15] Additionally, Grammy-winning Israeli violinist Miri Ben-Ari and The X Factor finalist Carly Rose Sonenclar also performed at the ceremony.[16]

Notable medalists

American Olympic medalist swimmer Garrett Weber-Gale won the gold medal in the men's 100 free with a time of 48.99, and won the gold medal in the men's 50 meter sprint with a new Maccabiah record time of 22.68 seconds.[17] Andrea Murez won five gold medals in swimming for the US, and two silver medals, and received the 2013 Maccabiah Games Most Outstanding Athlete Award for Women.[18][19][20] American Major League Soccer player Ross Friedman helped Team USA capture a gold medal in soccer, leading the Games in assists.[21] In karate, American Dov Sternberg won a gold medal in Team Kata.[22]

Marcel Felder of Uruguay won a gold medal in men's tennis.[23] Canadian National Hockey League player Zach Hyman had three goals and three assists in two games, and won a gold medal, and was joined on the team by Adam Henrich.[24].[25] Canadian Sasha Gollish won the half-marathon.[26]

Israeli Laetitia Beck won both an individual gold medal and a team gold medal at the Games, shooting 69 in each of the three rounds, finishing 9-under, 15 strokes ahead of her next competitor.[27] Israeli Olympic sprinter Donald Sanford broke the Israeli record and won the gold medal in the 400 meter race with a time of 45.65, defeating Australian Olympic finalist Steven Solomon.[28][29] Israeli Maor Tiyouri was a silver medalist in the 3000 m.[30] Israeli Olympic racing cyclist Shani Bloch won a silver medal in the women's triathlon.[31] Israeli two-time European champion Alex Averbuch returned from retirement and won the gold medal in the pole vault.[29] Israeli Olympian Neta Rivkin won the all-around gold medal in rhythmic gymnastics. Israeli Olympic swimmer Amit Ivry won a bronze medal in the Women's 100m freestyle, with a time of 57.19.[32][33] Israeli Keren Siebner won two gold medals, in the 100m butterfly and the 400m freestyle relay team, which set a new Israeli record.[34] Israel's Olympian Alex Tripolski won the gold medal in the 10 meter air pistol with a score of 571, and the silver medal in the 50 meter free pistol with a score of 530.[35][36] Israeli Olympic badminton player Misha Zilberman won two gold medals.[37] Israeli Daniel Poleshchuk won a gold medal in Men's Open Squash.[38][39][40]

American baseball pitcher Benjamin Feinman, a recent high school graduate, threw a no-hitter on the opening day of competition for Team USA against Canada. This was the first no-hitter in the history of the Maccabiah Games. Team USA, which also had Israeli-American Dean Kremer pitching for it, went on to take the gold medal in baseball, and Feinman was selected as the MVP of the baseball competition.[41][42]

American Spencer Weisz was a member of the Under-18 USA National basketball team that won the gold medal, and he earned Most Valuable Player recognition for the tournament.[43] Danny Schayes coached Team USA in basketball.[44]

Participating communities

Participating Teams[45]

Debuting countries

Debuting countries[53][54]


The 2013 Maccabiah Games programme featured 34 sports encompassing 42 disciplines.[55]


Calendar of tournaments.[55]

OCOpening ceremony Event competitions CCClosing ceremony
July 18
Field Hockey
Half Marathon
Ice Hockey
Lawn Bowls
Open Water
Rhythmic Gymnastics
Table Tennis[59]
Ten Pin Bowling
Track and Field
Water Polo
July 18

Medal count

Medals table for Open competition

  *   Host nation (Israel)

1 Israel*153135123411
2 United States776059196
3 Canada9111434
4 Australia671023
5 Brazil551222
6 South Africa44917
7 Hungary33915
8 France3205
9 Argentina28414
10 Ukraine2248
11 Germany2136
12 Azerbaijan2013
13 Russia151016
14 Great Britain15410
15 Mexico1337
16 Netherlands1124
17 Slovenia1113
18 Cuba1023
19 Latvia0145
Totals (19 nations)274254274802

Combined medals table for all competitions (Juniors, Open, Paralympic, Masters)

  *   Host nation (Israel)

1 Israel*285271299855
2 United States10394120317
3 Russia24222672
4 Canada15182457
5 Australia9181239
6 Brazil861630
7 Ukraine84315
8 South Africa771630
9 Hungary42814
10 Germany4149
11 Argentina3121631
12 Great Britain391224
13 France3317
14       MWU32914
15 Mexico22812
16 Azerbaijan2035
17 Austria2013
18 Netherlands1225
19 Cuba1135
20 Slovenia1124
Totals (20 nations)4884755851548


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