NETANYA, ISRAEL — Barak Netanya LC will make their international debut at the sixth-annual Zombies Cup, held from March 31-April 2 at FC “BASK” in Belgrade, Serbia.
Netanya’s participation marks the first time an Israeli club has competed in the tournament, and just the fourth time a homegrown Israeli club has traveled abroad, following Ashdod LC’s successful showing at January’s New Years Cup.
“Our players have been working tirelessly all year long, and this tournament should be a nice test for the squad,” said Jack Kane, who serves as Netanya’s program director. “While I expect our team to be physically challenged, I believe that the guys have the skills and the grit to really turn some heads out there.”
8-10 teams are expected to join Barak and the host Belgrade Zombies. Clubs from Poland (2x), Russia, Italy and Hungary have hoisted the cup in prior years.
While the Cup marks Netanya’s first trip abroad, the club, which was established in 2013, is one of Israel’s strongest. Youngsters Ron Bentura and Ori Bar David have international experience at the 2016 FIL U-19 World Championships, where they helped Israel earn a #6 world ranking. Liron Glam, Sagi Hashai and Bar Yahalom could also bolster the team’s lineup if they are granted IDF leave to compete in Belgrade.
The schedule for the New Years Cup is expected to be released in the coming weeks, while Kane plans to announce a travel roster by the end of the month.