ASHKELON, ISRAEL — Israel Lacrosse has announced their 26-man roster for the Israel men’s national team which will compete at the 2019 World Indoor Lacrosse Championship, held at Langley Event Centre near Vancouver, Canada, from September 19-28.
The event marks Israel’s first-ever appearance in a World Lacrosse Blue Division, featuring the best teams in the world and the most direct path to the Medal rounds. Israel is ranked fourth in World Indoor competition, behind the traditional powerhouses (Canada, Iroquois and USA). Fifth-ranked England rounds out the top group, while 15 other countries in the lower pools are vying for a World Championship.
Canada is widely favored to win Gold on home soil, boasting a flawless 23-0 record since the first edition of the World Indoors in 2003. In their only prior meeting, Canada routed the blue-and-white, 19-3, in the semifinals of the 2015 World Indoor Championship.
The Iroquois Nationals, who have been on Canada’s heels in the box game, are expected to be finalists again in September. The fan-favorite squad has secured four silver medals in indoor play and nearly punctured Canada’s perfect record in an overtime thriller in the 2007 Gold Medal Game in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Although the two programs enjoy a tight-knit friendship and have met for friendlies in the field game, September will be the first-ever meeting between Israel and the Iroquois in any world championship event.
USA has been stuck in third place since the inception of the World Indoor Championship, as the field game is the favored version of the sport “South of the Border”. Although the Americans have not been able to crack the final, they’ve handled all challengers for Bronze, including Israel, who they defeated 15-4 in their only prior meeting at the Carrier Dome in September of 2015. Meetings between the two squads in training events have produced exciting results, and while USA is clearly favored, the blue-and-white likely must defeat the Americans if they hope to shake things up and claim their first-ever world medal.
England has been a staple in the Blue Division and certainly has more experience competing against the “Big Three”; they’ve finished 4th, 5th and 5th in prior editions of the World Indoors. In their first-ever meeting in the box game, the Israelis topped England, 13-8, in the quarterfinals of the 2017 European Box Championships. With tremendous playoff implications on the line, the match between these two teams is sure to be a spirited affair.
A schedule is expected to be announced later this month.
Me’et Machleef: Ori Bar David, Drew Lazar, Bryan Rotatori, Max Seibald, Ben Smith
Head Coach/GM: Brad MacArthur
Assistant Coaches: Jason Crosbie, David Dennenberg
Athletic Trainer: Denyse Beaumont
Equipment Manager: Dave Murray
Operations Assistant: František Klíma
Scout: Franklin Pargh
Manager: Scott Neiss