Sports Shorts

Acre celebrates new stadium with a win

After five years in the wilderness, Hapoel Acre finally got to host a soccer match at its new stadium last night. There was a carnival atmosphere during the game against Hapoel Be'er Sheva, with 1,700 fans - many of whom had boycotted the team's games at various stadiums in the north - coming out to cheer on their team. With two defeats already on the board, Be'er Sheva knew that a third loss would be a major blow to a team with aspirations of playing in Europe. But coach Nir Klinger had barely taken his seat in the dugout when, after just 10 minutes, Brazilian midfielder William Suarez put the ball into his own net to give the home team the lead. The visitors pressed hard for an equalizer, but self-destructed in the final minute of the first half, when Ido Exbard was red-carded for an off-the-ball foul. At a numerical disadvantage for the entire second half, Be'er Sheva was unable to find a way back into the game, and Nebojsa Marnikovic put the final nail in the coffin in the 56th minute to give Acre a 2-0 win. (Yitzhak Solomon)

Israelis excel at Euro windsurfing tourney

Israel's representatives have enjoyed a dream start at the RS:X European Windsurfing Championships in Bulgaria. Lee Korzits - who almost drowned during the previous European championships - stunned everybody by winning her first three races, giving her a significant lead over the rest of the field. The head of the Israeli Olympic preparation team, Gur Steinberg, was delighted with Korzits' performance. "Lee managed not only to excel in the areas we know she's good at," he told Haaretz, "but she was also superb in areas where she usually struggles: tactics and the start of the race." Korzits' main rival for the one Israeli ticket to next summer's Olympic Games, Maayan Davidovich, is in 15th place overall in the European championships. In the men's event, competition for the Israeli ticket to the Olympics is much tighter. Nimrod Mashiah finished fourth in his first race and went on to win the next two, leaving him third overall. Shahar Zubari is in eighth place following his three races, after he finished third in the first two and 10th in the final race of the day. (Uri Talshir)

Little success for locals at World Wrestling Championships despite Iranian no-show

The non-appearance of an Iranian wrestler gave Israel's Robert Avanesyan free passage into the round of 16 at the World Wrestling Championships in Istanbul yesterday. Ghasem Rezaei became the latest in a long list of Iranian athletes who have preferred to incur the wrath of sporting authorities rather than face off against Israeli opponents. Unfortunately for Avanesyan, his opponent in the next round of the 96 kilogram category - Eli Guri of Bulgaria - had no such qualms and defeated the Israeli en route to an appearance in today's final. In the 55 kilogram category, Israel's Vladimir Tsaryuk was ousted in the second round. (Rami Hipsh)

Israel, Canada prepare for Davis Cup clash

The Israeli and Canadian Davis Cup teams yesterday held training sessions in Ramat Hasharon ahead of their World Group playoff at the weekend. This will be the first time that the two nations have met in the Davis Cup. Canada's top player - Montenegran-born Milos Raonic - appears to have fully recovered from injury and will lead the line for the visiting nation. (Rami Hipsh)