Israel v Luxembourg in Luxembourg (ENC 3C)
Venue: Josy Barthel Stadium
Referee: Murinello (Portugal)
Image thanks to www.rugby.lu
Israel will travel without seven key players from the squad that was so convincing against Greece. Roi Alterlevi, Nathan Amos, Gilad Goldstein, Julien Maffi, Alon Okon, Mordechai Radashkovich and Yonatan Radashkovich are either injured or unavailable for the trip north. This has placed considerable pressure on selections, especially in the forwards. Regular back and captain Nimrod Kaplan moves into the forwards at number eight, whilst Ran Berzak, David Jacobi, Eyal Koren, Fabian Maguid, Ziv Melling and Adam Rubin have been brought into the squad to cover those unavailable.
Luxembourg lost 14-42 to Belgium A a few weeks ago. They have managed only two wins in the two years, both against Finland who will be relegated at the end of the competition.
Israel were too good for Luxembourg when they played in Israel in the first round, winning 30-0. Although I would expect Israel to win they have a much changed and younger team from two weeks ago.
21.03.2009 Israel 30-0 in Netanya (WCQ Europe R1; ENC 3C)
03.05.2008 Israel 20-12 in Netanya (ENC 3C)
20.05.2007 Luxembourg 25-16 in Cessange (ENC 3C)
29.10.2005 Luxembourg 19-3 in Cessange (ENC 3C)
01.06.2002 Luxembourg 31-19 in Cessange (FIRA B, Pool B)
These two teams first met in 1996. Israel won, in Herzliya, by 20-12 in FIRA B5 match.
GWC Rugby Rankings
Europe Table-Israel 28th, Luxembourg 36th
Prediction: Israel by 7 points.
Nimrod Kaplan (Capt.)
Omer Halfi Mendelsohn
Head Coach: Raanan Penn
Luxembourg squad not available as yet