Israeli Athletes Bare All in an ESPN-esque Photo Shoot

14 Israeli athletes pose naked in an ESPN 'The Body Issue' inspired shoot for Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper.

Gabriel Baharlia/Facebook/JTA

JTA - Since 2009, ESPN The Magazine has released an annual issue that features photos of renowned athletes posing nude. The Body Issue has become a fixture of popular sports culture that celebrates the immaculate bodies that top athletes can achieve.

Now, Israel’s popular Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper has given the idea a try, photographing 14 of Israel’s best athletes nude in “a first” for the country. According to Israel21C, fashion photographer Gabriel Baharlia spent two and a half weeks with the athletes to produce the images. The results, published last weekend, are as startling as ESPN’s.

Ariel Harush, 27 (soccer)

Ariel Harush
Gabriel Baharlia/Facebook/JTA

Ariel Harush is a soccer goalkeeper for the Israeli national team and Hapoel Tel Aviv in the Israeli Premier League.

Amit Ivry, 26 (swimming)

Amit Ivry
Gabriel Baharlia/Facebook/JTA

Amit Ivry is an Olympic swimmer who holds several national records in Israel.

Gal Mekel, 27 (basketball)

Gal Mekel
Gabriel Baharlia/Facebook/JTA

Gal Mekel is a basketball guard who has played in the NBA and currently handles the ball for Serbian team Red Star Belgrade.

Ma’ayan Shahaf, 28 (high jump)

Ma’ayan Shahaf
Gabriel Baharlia/Facebook/JTA

Ma’ayan Shahaf is a seven-time national champion high-jumper.

Maor Buzalgo, 27 (soccer)

Maor Buzalgo
Gabriel Baharlia/Facebook/JTA

Maor Buzalgo is a soccer midfielder for the Israeli national team and Hapoel Beer Sheva in the Israeli Premier League.

Meirav Dori, 29 (basketball)

Meirav Dori
Gabriel Baharlia/Facebook/JTA

Meirav Dori is a basketball guard who plays for the Israeli national team.

Donald Sanford, 30 (track)

Donald Sanford
Gabriel Baharlia/Facebook/JTA

Donald Sanford is an American-Israeli Olympian who holds the Israeli record in the 400-meter dash.