Former Israel and Maccabi Tel Aviv captain Gur Shelef announced his retirement on Thursday. The 33-year-old forward, who played for Antwerp in the Belgian league in the last two seasons, won seven Israeli championships and three European titles in seven seasons with Maccabi (1998-2005). Despite captaining the side, Shelef spent most of his final two seasons at Maccabi on the team's bench, and eventually left the club after becoming frustrated with his lack of playing time. "Last season I missed many games through injury and as a result I have now decided to retire," Shelf said on Thursday. "I've had back problems for a while and the retirement didn't come out of the blue. Nevertheless, it still feels strange. I've experienced many amazing moments in my career which I'll always remember." Israel coach Tzvika Sherf said: "I trained Shelef as a youth player and I gave him his first chance in the first team. It's a shame he's retiring at such a young age, but he had no choice. He's undoubtedly one of the cleverest players Israeli basketball has ever seen."