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Israeli Sport: Netball scoring goals in Ha’aretz!

Posted: 19-Jun-2019 by Maccabi NSW

There was a thrilling finish at the Final of the 2019 Israel Netball League, last week. This was the 10th league final, as Israel Netball goes from strength to strength.

This year’s gold medal match saw ladder leaders Jerusalem Merkaz square off against second placed Tel Aviv, in Mod’in, with a good crowd of supporters in attendance.

After trailing by a few goals the entire game, the Tel Aviv team equalized with just five minutes to go. The crowd were roaring, and Tel Aviv pushed forward to take the gold medal with a final score of 43-41. This ensured back-to-back gold medals for Tel Aviv, and to top it off, the MVP award for the league was given to a Tel Aviv player too!

Israel Netball has come a long way over the last decade or so. It was not so long ago that a group of expats, mainly from South Africa, Australia & the UK, would get together to play social games, originally with the aim to field a team at the Maccabiah Games. However, it became evident that there was a desire to develop netball in Israel further, and before long, the Israel Netball Association was formed and later recognised as a member of Netball Europe and the International Netball Federation in 2012. 

These days, there are 7 clubs for seniors: Tel Aviv, Jerusalem Merkaz, J-Town (another Jerusalem based team), Ra’anana, Modi’in, Kfar Etzion and Givat Washington. These teams all play in the national league. 

Additionally, the Israeli national team plays in international netball tournaments – most recently in the 2019 Open Challenge in the Isle of Man last month – and is now very competitive at the Maccabiah Games. One of Israel Netball’s current goals is to develop more junior and kids clubs, and a new generation of players is coming through, including Israeli-born players. 

Here at Maccabi in Australia we are so pleased to see Netball thriving in Israel. We can be proud of the contribution that Aussies living in Israel are making to the development of Israel Netball, with many of Israel Netball’s players, coaches, umpires, and even the national team physio, all hailing from Australian shores and many of them having grown up playing with Maccabi!

To read more about Israel Netball, go to: http://israelnetball.org.il/

 
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