Awat, Dudu : Jews In Sports @ Virtual Museum

Awat, Dudu

Awat is a sharp goalkeeper who possesses excellent reflexes.

Birth and Death Dates:
b. Oct. 17, 1977

Career Highlights:
Awat began his career with Nazareth, but moved to Maccabi Haifa at an early age and was put behind Nir Davidovic as the leading goalkeeping prospect in the organization. An offended Awat moved to Maccabi Tel Aviv, but was again considered a second stringer. He then transfered to Hapoel Haifa, under the impression that he would finally become a starter but he was demoted again. Early in the 1998-99 season, the regular goalie was injured and Awat took the chance. Hapoel won the championship that year and Dudu was genuinely brilliant in goal. By the time the first stringer Avi Peretz recovered, Awat was irreplacable.

Awat was called up to the national team, but only as a replacement for Davidovic. In 2002, Awat returned to Maccabi Haifa as cover for the seriously injured Davidovic. The Greens won the championship and Awat will be in goal for them again this term. Awat has enjoyed some fabulous performances on the national team, and is considered by many the leading goalkeeper in the country.

Dudu did not have the greatest night but did contribute to Haifa's defeat of Sturm Gratz on their way to becoming the first Israeli team to qualify for the Champions League. During the group phase, Awat was spectacular in the first game, although Haifa was beaten 5-2 by Manchester United. He single-handedly prevented an unprecedented massacre with his gymnastic saves. He was even better in the second game against Olympiakos. Awat was unbeatable as Haifa cruised to a 3-0 victory. In their third game, they lost to Bayer Leverkusen, 2-0.

In the second game against Leverkusen in Germany, Awat was not at his best as he misjudged two crosses and Haifa lost 2-1 despite a good performance on their part. Then, on October 29, Haifa played United again and this time they were prepared. The Greens won 3-0 as Awat was excellent in goal. During the Israel League season, Dudu was starting keeper for Haifa as Davidovic struggled with an injury and did a good job in goal. Haifa lost the title on the very last day of the season due to goal difference. During the 2002-03 season, Awat was in goal for Maccabi Haifa as they played in the Champions League, the first time an Israeli squad made it to the group stage of the competition. Haifa finished in third place in their group following an historic victory over powerhouse Manchester United. In the Israel League, Haifa finished in second place.

On July 17, 2003, Awat signed with Spanish side Racing Santander. A French citizen, Awat joins Israeli Yossi Benayoun in the squad. Benayoun said, "Dudu is a very good keeper and an excellent friend, who will prove to be a great addition to our squad...". Awat struggled to establish himself as the starting goalkeeper in Santander since he had to contend with on-loan Manchester United goalkeeper Ricardo Lopez. The team managed to avoid relegation towards the end of the 2003-04 campaign. Due to a lack of reliable playing time, Awat lost his place in the Israeli national team.

Origin:
Upper Nazareth, Israel

Position:
Goalkeeper

Career Statistics:
13 caps



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References:
Maccabi Haifa F.C, website


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