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Photo by: Adi Avishai
Most BSL games still on as Katash, Eilat host Mac TA
By ALLON SINAI
11/17/2012
The blue-and-white advanced to its 11th straight EuroBasket tournament after finishing second in its qualifying group.
 
The Israel Basketball Association will decide on Sunday morning whether to postpone any of the BSL games scheduled for the evening due to the ongoing rocket fire from Gaza.

The game between Ironi Ashkelon and Bnei Herzliya has already been put off to Monday and assuming there is no respite in the rocket launches to the city, the encounter will be moved to Herzliya.

Oded Katash faces his former club Maccabi Tel Aviv on Sunday, this time with his new team Hapoel Eilat.

BSL basketball returned to Eilat this season after 13 years, with BC Habika’a being relocated to Israel’s southernmost city by owner Doron Herzikowitz.

Eilat had one of Israel’s top clubs in the 1990’s, gaining promotion to the top flight ahead of the 1991/92 season under the guidance of current Israel coach Arik Shivek and remaining there for eight years.

The early indications are that Eilat could be one of the league’s top sides yet again this season, with Katash’s men beginning the campaign with four wins from five games.

Eilat has triumphed in all three of its home contests to date and Sunday’s game will be played in front of packed stands after tickets already sold-out last week.

Maccabi has also got a 4-1 record, but it enters the encounter on the back of its first Euroleague defeat of the season, losing 64-62 to Unicaja Malaga at Nokia Arena on Thursday.

Hapoel Jerusalem will target its third straight league victory when it visits Hapoel Holon on Sunday.

Jerusalem began the season with three consecutive defeats, but has won its last two games by an average 22.5 points.

Also Sunday, the in-form Maccabi Haifa hosts on-fire Barak Netanya.

Haifa thrashed Hapoel Tel Aviv 88-52 last week, while Netanya remained the BSL’s only perfect team, improving to 5-0 with a 70-62 win over Maccabi Rishon Lezion.

On Monday, Rishon hosts Maccabi Ashdod and Hapoel Tel Aviv visits the winless Hapoel Gilboa/Galil.

Elsewhere on Sunday, the Israel national team will discover who it will face in the European Championships in Slovenia next September.

The blue-and-white advanced to its 11th straight EuroBasket tournament two months ago after finishing second in its qualifying group with a 6-4 record.

Israel was placed in the sixth and last seeding pot for Sunday’s draw which will take place more than 80 meters into the Slovenian underground in the Postojna Cave Concert Hall.

The 24 participating teams will be drawn into four groups of six, with the top three teams from each group to progress to the second round.
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