1) Maccabi Tel Aviv drew with Pyunik 0:0 in the first leg of Third Round Europa League Qualifying in Yerevan, Armenia as the decisive return leg will tale place next Thursday, August 16 at 20:30 Israel time at the Netanya Stadium. Head Coach Vladimir Ivic said following the match: ““For me this is not a good result. We came here to win and we came here to score. We didn’t score so it’s not a good result.” The Serbian continued, ““Our target is to advance to the group stage of the Europa League. But the first target is to defeat Pyunik and we must go game by game. Due to this result we will have to be more aggressive and play better than we did today.”
2) The Sports Rabbi Podcast featured Deshaun Thomas ex-Macacbi Tel Aviv forward who signed with Panathinaikos and Brian Sciaretta of American Soccer Now came on to discuss the appointment of Austrian Andi Herzog as Head Coach of the Israel National Team. Also on board is Paul Zeise of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette to talk about Bnei Herzliya’s new point guard James Robinson and Aliyah Funschelle, Wichita State Men’s Basketball Beat Reporter for The Sunflower joined The Sports Rabbi to discuss Herzliya’s new big man Shaquille Morris.
3) Israel National Team Captain Bibars Natcho has signed with Greek powerhouse Olympiacos FC after playing with CSKA Moscow since 2014. Joining him on the Piraeus based squad is the Iran National Team Captain Ehsan Hajsafi who last season played with Panionios of Athens against Maccabi Tel Aviv earning him a lifetime ban from the National Team which lasted for close to a year. Natcho is of Circassian descent from the city of Kfar Kama and is the first Non-Jewish Captain of the Israel National Team. There is a second Iranian on Olympiacos Karim Ansarifard and it will certainly be interesting to see what the reactions will be throughout the season due to the political issues between the two countries.
4) It’s been 10 years since iconic basketball coach Ralph Klein passed away and his legacy is one that will impact generations across Israel. Klein, a Holocaust survivor not only was a star player winning 8 league titles and 6 State Cups but was also won 10 league championships and 10 cups as a coach. He coached Maccabi Tel Aviv BC to the Euroleague title in 1977 and helped Israel to a Silver Medal at the European Championships in 1979. Born in Berlin, his family moved to Budapest prior to World War II and was rescued by Raoul Wallenberg, but his father was captured and sent to Aushwitz where he died at the hands of the Nazis. In 1983 he took over as coach of West Germany and led them to the 1984 Olympics and 1985 Eurobasket Tournament.
Quick Hits – F Terrell Miller signed with Hapoel Eilat after playing with Murray State last season…Moti Amsalem, President of Hapoel Eilat passed away at the age of 60 yesterday…Ali Osman helped Bnei Sakhin to a 1:0 Toto Cup win over Kiryat Shemona…Maccabi Haifa defeated Hapoel Hadera 4:0 thanks to goals by Nikita RukavytsaAllison dos Santos, Shlomi Azulay and Sean Veisman…