Contact theSOPAbout theSOPSupport theSOPWritersEditorsManaging Editors
theSOP logo
Published:August 16th, 2007 06:18 EST
Sports Can Bridge National Barriers

Sports Can Bridge National Barriers

By Suren Hossein

The U.S. women's baseball team defeated the Iranian national team last week in friendly matches that were held in Tehran, the capital of Iran.
Before, some U.S. sport teams to have experienced competitions with Iranians rivals, a team of U.S. men's freestyle wrestlers contested at the 2006 Takhti cup. According to TheSop, Iranian spectators truly understand wrestling and applaud their rivals.
Rich Bender, executive director of U.S. Wrestling, the national governing body for the sport in the U.S., said, "It has been great here. We have been treated with the utmost hospitality." He declared, "The Iranian fans lived up to their reputation as among the most knowledgeable and appreciative wrestling fans in the world. They could best be described as raucous, frenzied, loud, pulsating, rhythmic, and great."
Two months ago, a U.S. representative revealed that American sport organization interested in to have relations with archrival counterparts and one of the Iranian deputies showed green light. 

The Iranian national water polo team is scheduled to fly to Long Beach, California to compete in a series of matches beginning Aug. 18 at California State University.
Iranian and American athletes have already won despite political differences that have limited government's contiguities.

Sports is a tremendous force that brings people, nations and cultures closer together.  For instance, the Iraqi national soccer team’s winning of the Asian crown created a national sense of unity within the war-torn country and unified the Iraqi tribes, which included Arabs, Kurds and Turks after 4 years.  Iraq defeated Saudia Arabia in the final soccer Asian championship to become champions for the first time.

Currently, a select group of U.S. basketball players will play in the Iranian league.  They are very popular and well received by the Iranian fans. The Iranian national basketball team won the Asian championship last week and led the Olympic Games after 60 years.

It is my opinion that the U.S. basketball players are the greatest in the world, and will certainly raise the level of play in Iran. We are indebted to them and we are very happy to have some U.S. athletes in the country of Iran.
I would like to see the day when Iranian and U.S. athletes can continue to strengthen their relations and continue to compete together in sports and fellowship.

According to Malcolm X, “we are all in the same boat regardless of where we have come from.”