Latest News – 07 Aug 2015

Team Maccabi SA brings home eight medals from EMG 2015!

Maccabi South Africa’s inaugural involvement in the European Maccabi Games was a resounding success. The SA delegation of 37, which comprised three futsal teams and two swimmers, won eight medals overall in Berlin, including five Gold, one Silver and two Bronze.

Maccabi SA Chairman Cliff Garrun won Gold in three swimming events: Masters 50m, 100m and 200m Freestyle, to add his ten medal tally from the 1973, 2009 and 2013 Maccabiah. Cliff’s daughter Kim, also a 2009 Games medallist, won two Gold medals (Open 50m Backstroke, 50m Freestyle) and a Silver medal (100m Freestyle).

“We would like to thank the EMG 2015 Committee for inviting us and congratulate them on hosting a well organised and memorable event. Team Maccabi SA was deeply honoured to have been a part of this momentous occasion in Berlin, where we sang both Nkosi Sikilele and HaTikvah with great pride”, commented Garrun.

Maccabi SA first sent a Futsal team to the 2011 Pan American Games in Sao Paulo and then the 2013 Games. Preparations for EMG 2015 began 18 months ago and involved the formation of a Selection Committee including the SA National Coach Quinton Allies and SA Player Pirer Fazlur, as well as team trials, regular practice sessions and matches, as well as video analysis and mental conditioning.

EMG was a steep learning curve for the Junior (U16) Futsal team who took part in their first major event against experienced contenders Great Britain, Spain and Turkey. They narrowly lost out on qualifying for the Semi’s in a tough 6-5 battle against Spain. “I am immensely proud of this team who left SA as boys and will return as men. On the day some of their games could have gone either way, but they never gave up and left everything they had to give on the court”, said Cohen.

The Open and Masters teams both won their Group rounds with full points, the first Maccabi SA teams in either football or futsal teams to achieve this. The Open category was the most highly contested event at EMG 2015 with 16 teams taking part. After a decisive 5-0 victory against Finland in the Quarter-Finals, they lost to the very experienced British team 4-0 in the Semi’s. The Bronze Medal Match vs Israel was unfortunately cancelled as Israel were forced to withdraw due to injuries The Opens were thus awarded Bronze although all agreed they would have preferred the opportunity to win it on the court. However they had an outstanding tournament and were well deserving of a medal.

After three impressive wins against Denmark, Spain and Great Britain, the Masters team lost their first game of the tournament 4-2 to Turkey in the Semi-Finals. They went on to capture the Bronze medal beating Denmark for a second time, 3-1.

Cliff 1

Maccabi SA Chairman Cliff Garrun on the 1st place podium


U16 Futsal Team

U16 Futsal Team


Total Medals: 2 Bronze

Junior Futsal – Group: Spain, Turkey, South Africa, Great Britain

Open Futsal – Group A, B, C + Group D: Germany, South Africa, Estonia, Switzerland

Masters Futsal – Group A + Group B: Great Britain, Spain, Denmark, South Africa


Tues 28/7 Open Group D Germany W 4-3
  Masters Group B Denmark W 5-3
Wed 29/7 Juniors Group Great Britain L 9-3
Thurs 30/7 Juniors Group Turkey L 7-5
  Open Group D Estonia W 6-3
  Masters Group B Spain W 6-5
Friday 31/7 Juniors Group Spain W 6-5
  Open Group D Switzerland W 7-1
  Masters Group B Great Britain W 3-2
Sun 2/8 Juniors Semi-Final Turkey L 6-5
  Open Quarter-Final Finland W 5-0
  Masters Semi-Final Turkey L 4-2
Mon 3/8 Juniors Bronze Match Spain L 8-5
  Open Semi-Final Great Britain L 4-0
  Masters Bronze Match Denmark W 3-1
Tues 4/8 Open Bronze Match Israel W (Israel withdrew)

Speaking after the tournament, Cohen said: ‘’After such dominant Group Rounds both Open and Masters teams were admittedly crushed to lose the decisive games, but realistically we gave our absolute best against very experienced teams. We all learned a lot at this tournament and will use this knowledge to grow stronger and better. I would like to thank all involved, including the dedicated parents, who have contributed to our success’’.

‘’We are extremely proud of our Futsal teams and heartily congratulate Ronen, management, coaches and players on their success at EMG 2015. Their intense hard work and effort has paid off. The Futsal Programme has been adopted as a Best Practice Model for our other sports and we are hopeful that with the relevant infrastructure and systems, these sports can achieve the same results in 2017’’, added Garrun.


Masters Futsal Team that won Bronze

Aron Freeman & Ronen Cohen  - Masters Futsal

Aron Freeman and Ronen Cohen with their Bronze medals


Head of Delegation: Cliff Garrun

Junior/U16 Futsal:

Manager: Hirshi Groner; Assistant Manager: Jonathan Cohen; Coach: Ronen Cohen; Assistant Coach: Levi Groner

Team: Aaron Benjamin; Aaron Berchowitz; Jonny Bernstein; Zac Cohen; Aaron Glanz; Dylan Greenberg; Zach Israel (Capt); Jarryd Roup (Vice-Capt); Devin Sheinbar; Joseph Sher; Joshua Tarlie; Dylan Trappler.

Open Futsal

Manager: Ronen Cohen; Coach/player: Sholem Lange

Team: Gadi Cohen; Saul Cohen (Vice-Capt); Levi Groner; Sholem Lange (Capt); Eugene Lazarus; Daniel Lutzno; Dean Osher; Itai Propheta; Ryan Smith; Greg Vituli; Aaron Witz; Cliff Yuter.

 Masters Futsal

Managers/players: Ronen Cohen; Louis Zive

Team: Wayne Avnit; Andrew Cohen (Capt); Ronen Cohen; Harel Dobrin; Aron Freeman; Greg Hatzkilson; Trevor Morris; Daniel Woznica; Louis Zive (Vice-Capt).


Masters: Cliff Garrun

Open: Kim Garrun
















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