The Algerian judoka Fethi Nourine boycotts the fight against the Israeli Tohar Butbul – a scandal. But no surprise: two years ago there was the same incident at the World Cup in Tokyo.
The Algerian is only the last in a long list of Arab and Iranian athletes who boycott competitions against their Israeli opponents.
The excuses are as transparent as they are ridiculous.
Sometimes there are problems with the visa when the teams are drawn into a group. Or fighters suddenly gain weight and can no longer start in the corresponding weight class. Spontaneous injuries are also popular as an excuse.
The international sports federations have so far mostly watched the goings-on without taking any action. That too is a scandal!
Now the IOC has at least responded and immediately sent the judoka and his trainer home.
But that alone is not enough! Nourine and all other boycotters should be banned for life. Because their behavior has no place in sport!