Rain stopped play, apparently, but there’s no rush to finish


North-west London came to a grinding halt on Sunday as cup final fever, and a match at the Emirates, gripped the capital. Only four matches went ahead in the MGBSFL. Some were called off due to waterlogged pitches, but I believe the lure of the aforementioned fixtures stopped other clubs from going that extra mile to get their games played. Gone are the days of teams going to Hackney Marshes – one of the most reliable grass venues in the land.

A couple of managers I spoke to described it as a “blatant bending of the rules” but league chairman David Wolff says there’s no need to panic just yet.

"We can’t force teams to play and rely on goodwill,” he said.

"I don’t think we have a crisis as we still have plenty of weeks available.

"In the worst-case scenario, we can now ask the FA for an extension as there is no longer an official end-of-season date."

One manager who never takes an easy way out is Gabriel John of Boca Jewniors. He bent over backwards to put a side out for what would’ve been their first match in the Barry Goldstein Trophy. But in the end he admitted defeat, saying: “For the first time in my managerial life we couldn’t raise a team.” I just hope my pre-match prediction of a 5-0 win for Norstar London Raiders B didn’t have his players running scared.

There were no such problems in the Maccabi Masters League. My match was played in glorious conditions on the excellent 3G surface at the Hive. We faced bogey team Waldaf Town and finally beat them, at the fourth time of asking, in a battle between two, good, honest and hard-working teams.

Indeed both sets of players received special praise from referee Stuart Lustigman, who is chairman of the league.

He said: “With all the adverse publicity around indiscipline in football, such as industrial language, abuse towards referees and poor sportsmanship, it was a pleasure to officiate the match between Faithfold and Waldaf Town. Matches like that bring credit to the Maccabi Masters Football League.”

One club that won’t be involved in Matchday 27 of the MGBSFL season is Redbridge Jewish Care who are taking a group of players to visit Auschwitz.

* I was disappointed to hear that the Maccabi GB Futsal team have withdrawn from the National Futsal League after just one season in the top division.

After all the hard work that went into setting the team up, it appears their hand has been forced after the FA introduced a series of new requirements for teams to adhere to next season. These include four courtside cameras, ‘match-day experience’ for fans and every game needing to be streamed online.

MGB’s Adam Goldsmith said: “Unfortunately, even with our best efforts, it doesn’t look like MGB Futsal would be able to meet those requirements.

"It's a shame but I think the whole league will be restructuring as a result, including the top sides.”

* Congratulations to man-of-the-moment Daniel Poleshchuk upon his award as the Professional Squash Association’s Player of the Month.

* Ben Joseph was my MGBSFL Player of the Month for February following his outstanding form for NL Raiders, scoring three goals in important matches.

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive