Betar paired with Mac TA in State Cup

February 24, 2010 05:55
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Maccabi Kabilio Jaffa’s reward for becoming the first fourth division club in 47 years to reach the last 16 of the State Cup is a meeting with Hapoel Tel Aviv, with Betar Jerusalem being picked to play Maccabi Tel Aviv on Tuesday’s draw.

Jaffa claimed a stunning 1-0 victory at National League table-toppers Ironi Kiryat Shmona in the last 32, but its Cinderella run will surely end against the in-form Reds when the last 16 matches are played on March 23.

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Hapoel beat Maccabi in the Tel Aviv derby 4-2 on Monday and will be favored to score at least that amount against Jaffa.

Jaffa may be without its first goalkeeper against Tel Aviv. Gabi Burstein plays in goal for the amateur side, but in his day job he is Hapoel’s goalkeeping coach. Hapoel assistant coach Yossi Abuksis also plays for Jaffa on the weekend, but will have to miss out on its cup match.

The most hotly contested encounter is expected to be played at Teddy Stadium. Betar is the two-time defending cup holder and is desperate for another triumph to brighten a dismal season.

There are two more all Premier League ties.

Maccabi Haifa visits Hapoel Ramat Gan and Ashdod SC hosts Bnei Sakhnin.

“This is a tough match against a team which has knocked us out in the past,” said Haifa captain Yaniv Katan.

In the other last 16 ties: Ironi Ramat Hasharon vs Hapoel Beersheba; Bnei Yehuda vs Hapoel Ashkelon; Bnei Lod vs Maccabi Petah Tikva; Hapoel Petah Tikva vs Hapoel Upper Nazareth.

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