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Step Aside Ireland - Israel Replace Us As The Kings Of 'Granny Ruling'

Step Aside Ireland - Israel Replace Us As The Kings Of 'Granny Ruling'
By Conor Neville
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In the list of stock news stories that never fail to excite the Irish public, the news story 'British Person says something about Ireland' sits almost unrivalled in the popularity stakes. Make no mistake, the stats are there to back up this assertion.

But if there is one news story which trumps even this age-old item, it is 'British news organisation refers to Irish sportsperson/Oscar nominee as British'.

In fact, we have long suspected that British news sites are deliberately and knowingly referring to Irish sportspeople as British just to generate a traffic spike from Ireland.

Michael Conlan was the latest Irish sportsman to be claimed for Team GB. The British state broadcaster it was who committed that faux-pas on this occasion.

However, the business of nation states claiming their neighbours' sporting heroes as their own is not confined to this part of the world. Indeed, there are spots on this troubled planet where committing such an act can be even more fraught and dangerous than it is here.

Last Friday, Ahmed Abu Ghosh won Jordan's first ever Olympic gold medal in the 65kg Taekwondo.


Soon afterwards, Israeli publications referred excitedly to Abu Ghosh's Israeli heritage. Haaretz alluded to the Israeli town of Abu Ghosh (yes, he takes his name from the town) which they said 'rejoiced' at the success of the 'local boy'.


"The gold-medalist’s grandparents relocated from Abu Gosh decades ago to Jordan," according to Haaretz.

Some headlines were even more blunt, with the one above claiming that Jordan's Olympic champion is 'actually from Israel'.

Arab social media users were rather displeased by the Israeli's efforts to claim a link to this gold medal. One reminded them the Palestinian town of 'Abu Ghosh' existed before the state of Israel was founded.


And one reminded them that Israeli publications should really be rather embarrassed to claim athletes of Palestinian origin whose grandparents "relocated" from Israel sometime in the middle of the century.

Jamal Dajani, a spokesperson for the Palestinian Authority lashed out on Facebook.

I've noticed that several Israeli media outlets and Hasbara surrogates are in denial that Ahmad Abugaush is Palestinian in origin and hails from the village of Abu Ghosh, West of Jerusalem...I mean now they had stolen the land and appropriated the "Khuumus" they also want to claim the gold medal?

We in Ireland have a proud history of uncovering the Irish grannies of professional footballers, but we have to bow to the audacious example of 'granny-ruling' we've ever seen. (Of course, strictly speaking, it would have been a more perfect example of granny ruling had the lad competed for Israel but it took quite a cheek all the same.

Read more: "I Was Really Pissed Off" - Jack McCaffrey On Change In Approach That Led To Brilliant 2015 Season


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