A review of sweet and bitter events in the past year
Iranian people are focusing on their victories and gradually forgetting disappointing episodes that happened in the current Iranian calendar year ending March 20, 2010.The main events include winning the final of the 2010 Greco-Roman Wrestling World Cup, the national football team’s loss in the qualifying matches for the 2010 World Cup, losing the right to hold the 2nd Islamic Solidarity Games and the suspension of three of their weightlifters over doping charges.
1. Iran beat Turkey 4-3 in the final of the 2010 Greco-Roman Wrestling World Cup on in Yerevan, Armenia, in February and claimed the championship for their first time. A total of eight teams namely Iran, Georgia, Turkey, Russia, Hungary, Cuba and a Nordic team in addition to the Armenian host participated in the competition from February 12 to 14.
2. With nine minutes remaining to advance to the 2010 World Cup, Manchester United midfielder Ji-Sung Park scored an equalizing goal in Seoul pouring cold water on Iranians’ hopes to book a berth in the event. South Korea had already qualified for the prestigious event and their win paved the way for North Korea to advance to the World Cup along with Japan and Australia.
3. Iran lost its right to hold the 2nd Islamic Solidarity Games scheduled for April 2010. The Islamic Solidarity Games Federation (ISSF) located in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, asked the Iranians to remove the words “Persian Gulf” from the medals and brochures, but they declined and consequently lost the chance to hold the games.
Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries disapproved the use of the historical term “Persian Gulf” on the literature and medals of the games and insisted the term “Arabian Gulf” or just “Gulf” be used instead. All medals were engraved with the historically acknowledged name of Persian Gulf.
4. Three Iranian weightlifters Anoush Armak, Rashid Sharifi, and Omid Naiij Kenari were suspended for doping charges, one of them banned for life. Hossein Rezazadeh, the current caretaker of Iran’s Weightlifting Federation, soon after met the IWF President Dr. Tamás Aján and talked to him about lifting the suspension put on Iran’s federation.
IWF legal counsel Monika Ungar had already said that the Budapest-based federation can impose bans or fines on national associations if three or more of the lifters from the same country commit doping offenses in the same year.
The minimum fine is $50,000 and the shortest ban is two years, according to her.
Meanwhile, Iranian people hope to be successful in the new Iranian calendar year. In the coming year Iran will take part in important events such as the 2010 Asian Games which will be held in Guangzhou, China.