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The best of 2008
Published in Al-Ahram Weekly on 01 - 01 - 2009

Ahmed Morsy sums up the highlights of the year
1- The national handball team claimed the fifth African title after beating Angola 27-25, and as a result qualified to the Olympic Games 2008 in Beijing.
2- The national football team snatched the sixth African title and their second in a row in Ghana after defeating Cameroon 1-0 in the final.
Squash player Rami Ashour won the 2008 PACE Canadian Squash Classic Championship after beating his teammate World Champ Amr Shabana 3-1. Another squash player, Karim Darwish, meanwhile upset top-seeded Frenchman Thierry Lincou in the final of the Oregon Open to win his first title of the year at the $50,000 5-star PSA Tour squash event at Multnomah Athletic Club in Portland, US.
3-The national badminton team won the bronze medal at the African Championship for men, held in Mauritius.
4- Mondern pentathlete Aya Medani won the second place in the third series of the Modern Pentathlon World Cup, held in the UK.
Zamalek won their 16th Egyptian Volleyball league title in their history. The same team also claimed the 27th African Championship title after beating their arch-rivals Ahli.
The Ahli football squad clinched the domestic league title for the 33rd time.
Rami Ashour triumphed in the International Hurghada Squash Championship after beating world champion Amr Shabana, while Omnia Abdel Qawi snatched the women's title. In addition, top-seeded Amr Shabana won the International Kuwait Squash Championship.
5- Egypt obtained their first silver medal in the Seventh World Junior Tae Kwon Do Championship, held in Turkey.
Aya Medani claimed first place and the gold medal in the Modern Pentathlon World Cup, held in the Czech Republic.
Zamalek won the Egyptian Football Cup after beating Enppi 2-1. This was their 21st title.
6- World champion Aya Medani claimed the silver medal at the World Modern Pentathlon tournament in Hungary. Egypt collected 10 medals in total: five gold, four silver and a bronze, in the Juniors World weightlifting championship in Colombia. Sporting basketball team won the Egyptian league title after beating El-Gezira's team. The 2004 Olympic gold medal wrestler Karam Gaber won the gold medal in the Men's Greco-Roman 96 kg at the Romanian International championship.
7- World champion Aya Medani claimed the gold medal at the Juniors World Championship for Modern Pentathlon, held at Cairo Stadium.
8- Tennis champion Mohamed Mamoon claimed the silver medal of the men's doubles at the Samarkand Tennis World Championship in Uzbekistan. The Egyptian juniors squash team clinched the second place after losing to Pakistan 2- 0 at the World Juniors Squash championship.
Judoka Hesham Mesbah claimed the bronze medal at the Judo competition of the 2008 Olympic Games. Mesbah claimed the only medal for Egypt in the Beijing Games. Egyptians Rami Ashour and Raneem El Weleili emerged triumphant in the individual finals of the Sixth World University Squash Championships at the Cairo International Stadium in Cairo.
Egypt claimed 12 medals at the 2008 Paralympic Games: four gold, four silver and four bronze.
9- The Egyptian women Volleyball team were crowned champions at the African Volleyball championship, held in Kenya.
10- Squash prodigy Rami Ashour snatched the World Squash Championship held in Manchester after beating his fellow countryman Karim Darwish 3-1. The Egyptian senior basketball team succeeded in clinching the first spot in the African Basketball championship following their win over the Angolan team 85-84 in Alexandria. Darwish came first in the Qatar Classic squash championship for the first time after beating the defending champion the World number one Amr Shabana.
11- Egypt's speedball team was granted the gold medal at the 22nd Speedball World Championship in Paris. The rowing team came first at the Seventh Arab Rowing Championship in Tunis. The national bodybuilding team defended their world title after winning the World Bodybuilding Championship for the fourth successive time in Bahrain.
Egypt collected five medals at the World Karate Seniors Championship which took place in Japan by winning one silver medal and four bronze; they were seeded second in the kumite and third in the kata competitions.
African champions Ahli won a record sixth CAF African Champions League crown after triumphing 4- 2 on aggregate with Coton Sport of Cameroon.
The national shooting team emerged victorious in the Eighth Arab Shooting Championship in Qatar.
World champion Amr Shabana added another victory to his achievements throughout the year by beating Frenchman Gregory Gaultier 3-1 to win the Hong Kong International Squash championships for the fourth time in a row.
Egypt ranked second in the Fifth Judo for Peace Tournament, held at the Egyptian resort city of Sharm El-Sheikh after grabbing three gold, four silver and three bronze.
12- Egypt beat defending champions England 2- 1 to win the women's world team championship title for the first time in the history of Egyptian women's squash. The tournament was held in Cairo.

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