Israel gets 10 out of 10 for trying

Although some will no doubt see Israel’s latest performance on the European stage as a failure, I believe qualification in itself was a major achievement.

Time and again we have seen Israeli teams, both at club and national level, bust a gut to reach major finals, but they have fallen well short of the required standard and, with all due respect, do little more than just make up the numbers. But 10 out of 10 for trying lads.

* There was a real feel-good-factor at the Maccabi GB Table Tennis Championships, topped off by the attendance of England International player Darius Knight.

The competition featured Maccabiah stars of the past, present and, dare I say, future, including young James Katz, the son of the evergreen Dov who first took part in the competition aged 15.

Katz snr has gone on to rack up more than 15 titles and his partnership with Sally Prowen in the Mixed Doubles event defines the term ‘dream team’ to perfection.

* London Lions managers Tony Gold and Andy Landesberg are not reading too much into the 5-2 friendly defeat against Hadley. With Josh Kennet and Sam Sloma back in the fold, the signs are they will have a decent season in the Spartan South Midlands League Division One.

"Fitness levels are improving by the day,” according to Gold, though they look a little lightweight up top. How they could do with an Adam Bolle right now ...

* Over the years we have seen some wonderful team names in the MGBSFL. Los Lobos, Sutlu Borek, Jewdinese, Holy Mount Zion, Red Sea and Scrabble often got a laugh when mentioned at our Editorial conferences. Not forgetting, of course, JC Milan. But I have to say that whoever thought of Sacharit Donetsk deserves a pat on the back for a stroke of genius.

* Teams from the Maccabi Masters are on red alert after Golden Boot winner Richard Fogelman revealed he is ready to join the old boys league.

Nicknamed, Schnitzelman, he registered 40 goals in 16 matches for L’Equipe last season. Waldaf Town and NLR are joint-favourites to seal his registration, although word has reached me that Faithfold boss David Garson attempted to schmooze him in synagogue.

* If there’s a big deal on the table, you just know Pini Zahavi won’t be too far away from it. He has taken the role of a football agent to a new level and now lives a lifestyle many can only dream of, normally leaving a cloud of smoke from his favourite cigars in his wake. And when you think that he started off as a journalist, there’s hope for us yet.

    Last updated: 1:28pm, July 25 2014