The Egyptian Paralympic Committee (EPC) announced today on Facebook that they had reached an agreement with Spain to allow their swimmers to compete the country’s national adaptive swimming championships in their quest to meet the Minimum Qualification Standard (MQS) at an IPC Swimming recognized 50m competition.
Amr Abdel Kader will be the national coach, while Essam Zeidan will serve as the general manager for the Egyptian Paralympic swimming campagin. Imad Madbouly is the program’s managing director.
The EPC believes if they can get swimmers qualified in Spain, they should have the tools in place domestically to have a real opportunity to medal in Rio. Egypt did not send any swimmers to the 2012 Summer Paralympics. The last time they had swimmers competing the Paralympics was in 2000, when Essam Zeidan was Egypt’s sole representative. Egypt had 5 swimmers competing at the 1996 Summer Paralympics in Atlanta: Omar Abou Amra, Walid Abd Elkader, Essam Attia, Emad-Eldin Madboli, and Tarek Gharib. Abd Elkader won a bronze for Egypt in the men’s 50 meter butterfly S7 event. Attia won a silver for Egypt in the men’s 50 meter backstroke S5. All told, Egypt has won 10 medals in swimming between 1976 and 1996.
Making the challenge more difficult for Egypt to medal in swimming is that at the end of 2014, there was not a single internationally ranked Egyptian swimmer. Continental wise, only South Africa, Namibia, Mauritius and Kenya have IPC African ranked long course swimmers.
The Spanish championships take place on March 7 and March 8 at the Polideportivo Prado de Santo Domingo in Alcorcón, Madrid. There are 43 different races on the program, with most of the results being factored. All international swimmers at the event need to have their international classification done prior to competing unless they have attained permission prior to the event.