Text size

Israel's annual interclub league started off at the weekend, with the country's eight clubs participating in a round-robin competitions in both the Premier and Pennant divisions for men and women.

In a changed format this year, the Premier division is split into two sections. In the top section, last year's four top-ranked clubs each entered two teams of triples; while in the bottom section, the four lower-ranked sides are each composed of only one team of triples.

Played on a home and away basis, the tournament will extend over six weeks, at the end of which the winners of the top section will be the year's national league champions. On a promotion and relegation system, winners of the bottom section will be promoted to the top section for next year's tournament, at the expense of the lowest-ranked side in the top section.

Premier division

In the men's Premier top section, last year's league champions, Haifa, was at home to Ramat Gan, and came through with an overall 4-2 win. Harry Katz's trio won by 14 shots (24-10) against Ramat Gan's threesome led by Boaz Marcus. Haim Shefer's side went down by eight shots (11-19) against George Kaminsky's team, for Haifa to gain the two bonus points for the highest overall combined shot difference.

In the other top section game, Savyon won 5-1 against Ra'anana, with Haviv Takin's trio coming out on top 23-15 against Ra'anana's threesome skippered by Colin Silberstein. Cecil Bransky's team peeled 21-all with Ra'anana's team led by Jeff Rabkin. The latter clash saw a "full house" of nine shots conceded by none other than Israel's star international bowler, Jeff Rabkin.

In the bottom section, Kiryat Ono and Netanya peeled at 15-all, while the Jerusalem-Ramat Hasharon game was canceled due to bad weather.

In the women's Premier division, Kiryat Ono won both its games against Savyon for a 6-0 tally. Netanya won 4-2 against Ramat Gan, and Haifa beat Ra'anana 17-15. The Ramat Hasharon-Savyon match was also canceled due to the weather.