It was a brilliant and varied start for Amit Vigoda in Hanover. The Israeli is a new player on Hannover United’s wheelchair basketball team. The 19-year-old landed in Hanover on Saturday morning. Then team manager Udo Schulz went straight with him to HDI-Arena to watch the 1:1 kick between Hannover 96 and Aue. In the evening watch the Premier League match between Lan-Dale and Thuringia Bulls with Scholes.
On Sunday, the inquisitive Vigoda went out on his own. “I traveled from the hotel to the old town and followed the red thread,” he says. “There were some nice places with many great cafes. In Israel we do not have four seasons. It was great to see all the trees and everything in different colors,” he says happily of Hanover’s autumn and “old historic buildings.” Of course, United takes priority, “but I would like to get to know Hanover better quickly.”
On Monday, Fegoda, who plays as a quarterback, trained with the team for the first time. He is one of the greatest talents in wheelchair basketball. Important: Vigoda is eligible to play in the Euroleague, in which United participates. “He is a very talented young player. He has good qualities in all areas and I am very happy that we can now beat great players like Amit. It fits perfectly with the philosophy we’ve been relying on for years.”
The Israeli international, whose right leg was amputated, started wheelchair basketball in the United States in 2012. In 2015 he returned to his home country of Israel. There he played for Ilan Ramat Gan’s first club from 2017 to 2020. In 2020, Vigoda again moved to the USA, where he studied at the University of Texas-Arlington. With the Movin’ Mavs, he won the college championship in the spring of 2021 and was voted Most Valuable Player of the Tournament (MVP). That was when United noticed him.
At the European Under-22 Championships in Italy, he was the cornerstone in the selection of the Israeli juniors to the bronze medal. At EM, he also met United’s player of choice Alex Budde. “Very nice guy. We talked several times longer. “I am looking forward to playing with him,” said Vigoda, who has also been in contact with national player Jan Haller via Instagram. When Fegoda signaled his interest, he hit United. “At the moment, I would like to do what I love most. And that is playing basketball. For me, Hanover is the best place for that,” says Fegoda.
It remains to be seen if his player pass will be there in Saturday’s first leg at BBC Munsterland.
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