Israel’s swimmers failed to shine in a disappointing first day of action in the pool.
Gal Nevo was the first to compete, though he finished the 400m individual medley in a time of 4:16.74, seven seconds slower than his personal best, which resulted in a 19th place finish out of 27, and nearly five seconds slower than the time needed to reach the final.
Amit Ivry ended the women’s 100m butterfly heats in 27th place in a time of 59.42s, while their women’s 4X100m freestyle relay team (Keren Siebner, Zohar Shikler, Ivry and Andrea Murez) finished last – 16th out of 16 teams in 3:41.97.
Siebner, who only qualified for Rio at the last minute said: “I want to thank Amit, Zohar and Anddrea that made this once in a lifetime experience possible. I think today we proved that swimming is a TEAM sport. Two months ago, we set an Israeli record in Belgium with Andi going an unbelievable split of 53.4 (!) – that time got us a 16th place in the Olympics! Today, with Andi being sick, we were still able to repeat that time, with Zohar and Amit going first time under 56! I am so proud and honored to be part of #israelteam #makinghistory“.
Nevo said: “As soon as the delegation gets off to bad start that creates a bad atmosphere, but I believe that will change, there is still plenty of time and many more Israelis who have to compete.”