Algerian judoka Fethi Nourine also withdrew from the 2019 world championships in Tokyo to avoid facing an Israeli competitor, with his coach saying at the time “we were unlucky with the draw”.
An Algerian judo competitor has withdrawn from the Tokyo Olympics after learning he could have faced an Israeli opponent.
Fethi Nourine said his political support for the Palestinian cause made it impossible to compete against Tohar Butbul.
He told Algerian TV he would not “get his hands dirty” and his “decision was final”.
Tohar Butbul of Israel
The 30-year-old was drawn against Sudan’s Mohamed Asdalrasool on Monday for his first match in the men’s 73kg class. If he had won that match, he would have faced Butbul, who has a first-round bye, in the next round.