Team GB’s preparations for this year’s JCC Maccabi Games moved up a notch at the weekend when GB’s 73-strong squad picked up their kit, ahead of next month’s Games.
The athletes – who will be amongst 1,300 from around the world – will spend ten days in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, competing in both boys and girls U14 & U16 football, U16 Lacrosse, U14 boys’ table tennis, boys and girls tennis, swimming, track & field and dance.
Sunday morning’s official kit unveiling also revealed details of the lucky athletes who will be leading the GB delegation out at the 10,000 capacity Sun National Bank Arena for the Opening Ceremony. Footballer Ethan Kessel and Lacrosse player Yasmin Fairnington were named as the flagbearers, swimmers Talia and Alicia Slater will carry the Maccabi GB Flag behind the GB flag, while Hannah Grunwerg, who will be competing in the dance, along with Lacrosse player Aimee Rose will carry another GB flag at the back of the squad.
Two records were also announced at the launch – the amount of money raised for the Maccabi GB Challenger Tour, as well as the number of GB supporters who will be in the States to cheer the athletes on. Raising £15,000 for Challenge, which will allow five young people, who have mild to moderate learning difficulties, to experience a trip to Israel.
Brian Green, joint-head of GB’s delegation, said : “I’m absolutely delighted with the response – and how much has been raised. I appreciate how many charities are out there, but this gives other young people, who are physically and mentally challenged, to get the opportunity to go on tour and experience Israel, which they would not normally get.”
Also looking forward to the support his squad can expect, he said: “A record number of travelling support – 150 – gives the whole squad a lift and we’re delighted to welcome them and this will make our delegation the biggest apart from the hosts Cherry Hill.”
And looking to beat last year’s record haul of 108 medals, Green added: “Of course we want to win medals, but we expect and hope that everybody has a wonderful experience on and off the field of play, as well as meeting new friends from across America.”
Full GB squad:
Boys U14 Football:
Joshua Klein, Tyler Smith, Ethan Kessel, Jack Mattey, Joe Leslie, Jayden Tomlinson, Saul Fenton, Dylan Bull, Oscar Cohen, Hadley Shapps, Adam Freedman
Managers: Alex Elf & Liam Stein
Girls U16 Football:
Elisheva Hersh, Maxine Hotz, Amelia Shiner, Jodie Rich, Maddy Moryoussef , Lili Balkin, Eve Lewis, Shayna Joffe
Managers: Matt Travers & Debra Silver
Anabelle Permutt, Yasmin Fairnington, Kezia Levy, Aimee Rose, Sadie Barr, Charlotte Hurst, Ella Cohen, Georgia Benson, Lucy Botkai, Ellie Berg
Managers: Nicole Sawdaye & Emma Gibbor
Daniel Rinkoff, Alicia Slater, Eden Kramer , Emmanuelle Benjamin, Elisha Kramer, Chloe Jacobs, Daniel Schindler, Talia Slater, Molly Leizer
Manager: Dani Popeck
James Benjamin, George Bier, Jono Mizrahi, Charlie Pentol-Levy, Tamsin Salt , Charlotte Salt, Tali Fraser, Oliver Jacobson, Tash Mosheim, Jack Miller
Manager: Jamie Gibbor
Carl Breindel, James Rich, Oliver Weisfeld, Scott Leveson, Nathan Sonn, Jake Bluston, Sammy Kaye, Joe Kaye, Jonathan Stelzer
Manager: Ben Travers
Track & Field:
Alana Jacobs, Francesca Wall, Adam Mizrahi, Benjamin Oehley, Aidan Raphael , Rachel Ayrton, Tal Pelmont, Jessie Wolmark, Isabelle Flitterman
Manager: Phillip Benson
Hannah Grunwerg, Tamar Goldwater, Leanne Poluck, Sophie Katz, Annabel Anisfeld, Darcy Shonn, Daisy Margolis
Manager: Clare Dorset-Purkis
Heads of Delegation: Brian and Helena Green
Welfare Manager: Daniel Broman