This year’s Asian Games in Jakarta has so far proven to be a disappointing time for Afghans as half way through this major event, Afghanistan’s team of 80 athletes, competing across 16 sporting categories, have only managed to bag one bronze medal.
This medal was won by Khalid Hotak in Wushu.
With 10 of the 16 sporting categories already finished, Afghanistan’s chances of more medals now lie only with athletes taking part in the Judo, Korash Wrestling, Rugby Sevens and Karate events.
For the Afghan teams that took part in beach volleyball, basketball, boxing, jujitsu, badminton, wrestling, taekwondo, swimming, athletics, weightlifting and paragliding events, their chance of winning medals has passed.
The Asian Games started on August 18 and runs through to 2 September 2018 in the Indonesian cities of Jakarta and Palembang.
In total, 45 countries are participating.
In the meantime, officials at the General Directorate of Physical Education and Sport (GDPES) blame the team’s poor performance on nepotism.
They say the different federations choose players not on merit but on relations.
“GDPES was not involved in the selection of athletes for the Asian Games in Jakarta. All work has been done by the National Olympic Committee and according to the law it should be like this,” the technical and vocational deputy head of the GDPES said.
In 2014, at the Asian Games in South Korea, Afghanistan won two silvers and a bronze medal - while over 100 athletes participated.
“Most of the athletes are selected according to relations and its results in our athletes returning from the games with no medals,” Hussain Rahmati, a sportsanalyst said.
TOLOnews was not able to get comment from the National Olympic Committee on this issue.
So far, China is way ahead with a total of 162 medals. Their team has bagged 72 gold, 57 silver and 33 bronze.
In second spot on the Medals Table is Japan with 115 medals in total. They have 39 gold, 32 silver and 44 bronze.