Soccer-Maccabi Petah Tikva docked three points after brawl

JERUSALEM, April 10 Tue Apr 10, 2012 11:30pm BST

JERUSALEM, April 10 (Reuters) - Maccabi Petah Tikva were docked three points and had a player and a coach suspended by the Israel Football Association (IFA) on Tuesday after an on-pitch brawl broke out following their 2-1 Premier League win against Hapoel Haifa.

The IFA also suspended three Hapoel players after the ugly scenes on March 31 led to Haifa striker Ali Hatib being head butted by Petah Tikva goalkeeping coach Ami Genish.

Haifa said Hatib had briefly lost consciousness and required hospital treatment.

Genish was barred from all soccer activity for 18 months, while Petah Tikva midfielder Danny Parda was banned for three matches.

Hatib and Haifa team mate Stefan Dankovic were banned for three matches. A third Haifa player, Gal Erel, was banned for two matches.

Both clubs were fined 25,000 shekels ($6,666).

"The involvement of the accused (players) is indisputable and has been proved beyond a reasonable doubt and we therefore find them guilty of (harming a player from an opposing team and involvement in a fight} ... the clubs also cannot protest innocence," the adjudicators said in their ruling.

Petah Tikva owner Amos Luzon, whose side have dropped into the relegation zone following the three-point deduction, said the club would appeal the punishment.

($1 = 3.75 shekels) (Writing by Ori Lewis, editing by Pritha Sarkar)