Sport news

Convicted fraudster to help Pompey

By Simon Griver and Danny Caro, December 23, 2009

Israeli lawyer Daniel Azougy, a convicted fraudster, is reportedly in charge of managing struggling Premier League club Portsmouth’s finances.

Azougy, who was brought in by owner Ali Al Faraj last week to try to reduce the club’s £60 million debt, was convicted on four counts of fraud and sentenced to five months in prison in 2001 by the Tel Aviv Magistrates Court.

In 2002 he was found guilty in the Tel Aviv District Court of obstructing the course of justice by showing false documents to judges.


Tel Aviv face a round-Rubin

December 23, 2009

Hapoel Tel Aviv will face Russian champions Rubin Kazan in the Europa League Round of 32, after beating Hamburg 1-0 at home to finish top of Group 3, thanks to an early strike by Samuel Yeboa.

The Israelis will travel to Russia on February 18, with the return at Bloomfield Stadium on February 25.


I'm here to win says Peer

December 23, 2009

This week’s Israeli Tennis Championships sees the country’s top players competing in Ra’anana, including Shahar Peer and Dudi Sela, who are expected to win the women’s and men’s titles respectively

Peer, who finishes this year at No. 30 in the world rankings, comfortably defeated 16-year-old Liat Zimmerman 6-4, 6-1 in Monday’s first-round. After the match, she said: “This is what I had hoped for in my first match since the offseason started. I enjoyed myself and I’m here to win the tournament.”


Haifa half-way to championship

By James Martin, December 22, 2009

Maccabi Haifa have consolidated their position as runaway leaders of the Israeli Premier Division with a 2-0 victory over Bnei Yehuda.

Goals by Shlomi Arbeitman and Yaniv Katan placed Haifa on 39 points from 14 games, nine clear of nearest challengers Hapoel Tel Aviv, as the regular season nears the half-way mark.


Tricky Europa League draw for Hapoel

By Marcus Dysch, December 18, 2009

Hapoel Tel Aviv face a tricky visit to Russia to play Rubin Kazan in the last 32 of the UEFA Europa League.

Rubin were the surprise package of the Champions League group stages, securing a memorable victory over Barcelona at the Nou Camp in October before eventually finishing third in their group.

Hapoel successfully negotiated Group C in the initial stage of the Europa League, winning the group ahead of Hamburg and eliminating Celtic in the process.

The two-leg tie will take place over a week in February, with the first leg on February 18 and the return fixture on February 25.


Five goals from Resnick keeps Hawks winning streak

By Danny Caro, December 17, 2009

Five goals from goal-poacher Joshua Resnick saw Hendon Hawks B Under 10s continue their winning streak in the MGBPFL with an 8-5 victory over Hendon Inter Schools B. David Amor (2) and Shmuli Miller completed the rout while keeper Eli Meyer saved a penalty.

London Maccabi Lions White beat Pinner JFC 11-0 in the Watford Friendly League Under 16 League Cup with goals from Yoav Kestenbaum (3), keeper Arthur Caplin (2), Sam Lewis 2, Joshua Cinna, Joel Greyson, Joel Shaw.


Atar in running for Goal of the Season

December 17, 2009

Bnei Yehuda’s Eliran Atar is in the running for FIFA’s Goal of the Season award, which will be presented in Zurich on Monday. The top-scorer in Israel’s Premier League last season, Atar, 22, netted with a superb scissors- kick against Maccabi Netanya in the 1-1 draw last February. He joins nine other contenders for the inaugural Puskas Award for the best goal scored in the world in the 2008/09 season.

Atar is up against the likes of Cristian Ronaldo, Fernando Torres, Emmanuel Adebayor, Michael Essien and Andreas Iniesta.


Gold for Goodman at crosscountry championships

By Brian Sacks, December 17, 2009

Richard Goodman helped Team GB juniors win gold at the European Cross Country Championships in Dublin.

The Maccabiah double gold medallist, 16, finished fifth in the Under 20 race. Always within the leading group until teammate James Wilkinson surged with 1 km remaining, Goodman finished the 6km race nine seconds behind winner Jeroen D’Hodet of Belgium.

Conceding three years to most of the 89 competitors from 22 countries, JFS pupil Goodman was the youngest runner in the race.


Eyal Berkovic lined up for Israel job

By Simon Griver, December 17, 2009

Talks which could result in Eyal Berkovic succeeding Dror Kashtan as Israel’s manager have begun.

The former Manchester City star recently met Israel FA chairman Avi Luzon and persuaded him that he is capable of leading the national team to the Euro 2012 finals.

Luzon has repeatedly insisted that Berkovic has no coaching experience so is not suitable. But he has sought to appoint a leading foreign coach after Israel ended their 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign fourth behind Switzerland, Greece and Latvia.


Megabucks Sven is just a greedy fool

By Martin Samuel, December 17, 2009

Back in the eighties when Victoria Wood had her own sketch show, a regular feature was the spoof documentary, pre-dating programmes such as The Office by almost two decades. Many featured the actor Duncan Preston as presenter and reporter, Corrin Huntley.

In one, Today In Hospital, he investigated the workings of an NHS unit. A disgruntled nurse changed beds as he conducted his interview. Huntley asked what inspired her to take up nursing, and she cited the seventies hospital soap opera Angels. “And what appealed to you about that?”

“The hours, really.”

“The hours?”