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Bradford, Ontario
November 10, 2014

Bradford Bulls Captain Yuval Rosenthal has achieved the highest honour for an athlete granted from his native land of Israel.  Rosenthal has become the first ever ice hockey player in Israel to be granted 'exceptional athlete' status which exempts Yuval from mandatory military participation for six years.

Rosenthal was named Captain of the Bradford Bulls September 5th, 2014. In his first season with the club, Yuval has played a valuable role with the club playing both forward and defence while notching 14 points (2g, 12a) in just 18 games.  

This has been granted with support of the Israel Ice Hockey Federation in order to pursue hockey. As mentioned, this is the first time the status has been granted to an Israeli hockey athlete.  

The following translated article has been printed and distributed throughout Israel in their largest media outlets -- making Yuval Rosenthal a household name in his homeland.

" A milestone in the relations between the IDF and the Israeli sport has been reached: the first army ice hockey player athlete exception has been granted. Military Sports Committee, composed of representatives of the IDF sporting director, has decided to grant exceptional athelete status to Yuval Rosenthal (19) - an outstanding hockey player.

When he was only 13 years old he joined Rosenthal, born in Kfar Sava, was playing professional adult ice hockey league in the country. At 15, he was accepted to one of the most prestigious hockey institutions in the world - Banff Hockey Academy in Canada - where he practiced twice a day alongside high school and participated in a 80 game season.

As part of the IIHF World Junior Championships held three years ago in Mexico, Rosenthal scored three goals in one game. The last championship was chosen MVP of the tournament and won the gold medal, while leading the Israel team.

Rosenthal learned to skate on the ice with relative ease, and today it ranks very high in terms of skating technique. Given the fact that there is no option in Israel to advance in ice hockey, the country has recognized the potential hockey career of Rosenthal and temporary relieved him of his military duties.

Status of exceptional athlete is rare class can be very few Israeli athletes. Only nine (9) of Israel's elite athletes are granted this per year. Class allows the rejection of military service several years to continue to develop professionally abroad. This is a special status given only to those who are considered "individuals in their generation." Granting this status ice hockey athlete the first time is a breakthrough in the field of sport in Israel.

"There is no greater honor for me" said Rosenthal.

"There is no better feeling than that," said Rosenthal. "The director of sports Ice Hockey Federation of Israel are standing behind me with full force. This allows me to continue to develop and pave the way for Israeli ice hockey industry. There is no greater honor for me."

Rosenthal, of course, did not forget to whom it must especially thank. "The biggest thanks to my parents, Dr. Jacob and Julia Rosenthal, allowed me as a young man chasing a dream which at first seems so far away, and they did everything they could to help me make it a reality," he stressed.

"We are elated by Yuval and joy of all the athletes represented the last committee," Dvir said the lawyer who represented him in front of the military authorities. "Nine athletes were represented them all status and recognition from the army and we are proud of each and every one of them. Yuval received the status of an exceptional athlete and rightly so it is a young man still bring great honor to the state later."

The IDF Spokesperson confirmed that this is the first time a player wins ice hockey prestigious status. "