After having 30 percent of its regularly scheduled games postponed because of Israel’s war in Gaza, the Israel Cricket League resumed its season in Ashdod on Friday, with Young Ashdod taking on Ra’anana.
- Israeli cricket umpire dies after ball strikes him in the chest
- Wife of dead Israeli umpire tells of his love for cricket
Despite being outscored, Young Ashdod was crowned the winner due to its turn being cut short by Shabbat. Ra’anana batted first in the 40-40 format, finishing 141 all out.
Young Ashdod then took its turn batting and was 133-7 with 10 overs remaining. However, with Shabbat nearing, Ra’anana’s religious players were itching to get back home. Captain Herschel Guttman went over to the officials and conceded the game, Benjamin Sasson, the head of Young Ashdod’s club, told Haaretz on Thursday. Because Ashdod had another 10 overs remaining, it was calculated that the host was the technical winner.
The game itself seemed secondary to the overall excitement of the crowd to put the war behind and get back to the business of cricket. Sasson said that the players and visiting dignitaries, who included municipal officials Moshe Botrashvili, who is in charge of sports for the city, and Mickey Rosenberg, the CEO of Ashdod’s sports authority, held a ceremony marking the resumption of the season.
“The game was sportsmanlike, and there was a good atmosphere,” said Sasson, whose company Seyman Trade sponsors Young Ashdod. Cricket executives Naor Gudker, the CEO, and Yonatan Wasker, the chairman, also came out for the game, as well as Ashdod chairman Abi Arens.
“I want to say thanks for the cooperation with the municipality,” said Sasson. “They are wonderful people, always ready to help.” He added that he hopes “the time will come when they will build a stadium in Ashdod, which leads cricket for many years.”