• Issue: July 1985
  • Designer: Z. Rosenberg
  • Stamp size: 25.7 x 40 mm
  • Plate no.: 113 - 115
  • Sheet of 15 stamps Tabs: 5
  • Printers: E. Lewin-Epstein Ltd.
  • Method of printing: Photolithography

The 12th Maccabiah was held in Israel from the 15th-25th July 1985. The Maccabiah Games are the largest Jewish sporting event and are fully recognised and supervised by the International Sports Federation.

The 1st Maccabiah took place in 1932 and the second in 1935. After a break of 15 years caused by World War lI the Games recommenced in 1950 and since the 4th Games in 1953 they have taken place every four years in Israel.

The aim of the Games is to bring together Jewish youth from all over the world to take part in a sporting event and demonstrate their identification with Israel and the Jewish people.

In these days, when, time and again, efforts are made to ban Israel from international sporting events, the Maccabiah Games offer a challenge to Israeli sport and to world Jewry to demonstrate their strength and unity. Some 4,000 sportsmen from 35 countries will take part in the various branches of sport during the 10 days of this 12th Maccabiah.

This series of "12th Maccabiah stamps depicts three popular branches of sport:

Basketball - Basketball, one of the most popular international sports, was invented in 1891 by Dr. James Naismith, Director of the Springfield YMCA in the USA. He was asked to invent a game that could be played in an enclosed space and came up with basketball which became popular around the world. The game has widespread popularity in Israel whose representatives have carved a niche for themselves in the basketball Hall of Fame and have made the sport Israel's No. 1 sporting export. Israel's record includes Maccabi Tel Aviv's two titles as winners of the European Championship of Champions - in 1977 and 1981, the Israeli team's silver medal in the 1979 European Championships as runners-up to the USSR in Turin, and two Asian Championships - Bangkok 1966 and Teheran 1974. Israel takes part in all the major international basketball events and the sport as been included in the Maccabiah since 1935.

Tennis - Tennis is one of the old-established sports. The modern game of tennis was invented in the 1870s by Major Wingfield of Great Britain.

In recent years the outstanding proponents of the game have been the American John McEnroe and the Czech exile Martina Navratilova, who lives in the USA.

In recent years tennis has become a popular sport in Israel and Shlomo Glickstein and Shahar Perkis, who have made names for themselves on the international tennis scene, have become popular sports idols.

Tennis is also popular in Maccabiah circles and 120 players from 24 countries will be taking part in this year's competition.

Board Sailing - This, the very latest of aquatic sports, was invented in 1967 by Hoyle Schweitzer of Los Angeles and has gained rapid popularity in sailing circles, thanks to the ease of handling the craft, its inexpensiveness and the challenge it offers to its practitioners. It was granted Olympic status for the first time at Los Angeles in 1984. In 1982, Israel organised the World Sailing Championships.

top top 

12th Maccabiah - 1985