The Ashes were retained and the Aussies were sent packing - both here and in Israel as Team GB brought home medals in the respective Open and Junior competitions at the 19th Maccabiah Games in Israel
LONDON MACCABI VALE
A little closer to home, LMV gained promotion in their first-ever season in the Chess Valley League. Under the stewardship of GB all-rounder Neil Lederman, the team produced a strong campaign and finished runners-up behind Holtwhite Trinibis.
The club were lifted by the returning Joseph Greenwall-Cohen, Andrew Greenwall-Cohen and Danny Caro, with GB Open manager Russell Corin playing in CVL matches.
Lederman said: “Over the course of the season the new additions really made a difference. Caro was the type of opener that the team has been missing for several seasons, at one stage going over 100 without getting out.”
Record run-scorer Adam Brand was one of three that played eight out of 10 matches in the CVL. He was his reliable best, scoring almost 300 runs at an average of 59.8, including a 52-ball century against Chingford. “Along with 12 wickets,” said Lederman, “it is fair to say that although he is starting to look a bit old, he has still got many good years left in him.”
There were also notable mentions for Jonny Gould, Alex Haffner and Jon Daniels.
“But most of the accolades,” according to Lederman, “have to go to” Joseph Greenwall Cohen, who worked his way up the order and finished the season blasting 382 runs at 47.74 in the league. He also hit his first ton for the club as well as a brilliant 70 against the eventual champions. The LMV Player of the Year also chipped in with seven wickets.
“Joseph was invaluable,” said Lederman. “It’s been a long time since someone out-scored Brand in the league over a season. Some of his stroke-play was just majestic to watch and hopefully this is a start of things to come from him.”
Ben Lederman, GB’s six-wicket hero against Maccabiah champions South Africa, and Grant Reingold also produced some eye-catching performances. There was also praise for Andrew Greenwall-Cohen who finished as the top league wicket-taker with 13 victims.
“He bowled in good areas consistently and showed the rest of his teammates it is possible for a seam bowler to be a very good fielder,” said Lederman.
Youth regularly played a part in the first team, with Joe Nyman and Josh Frey impressing on occasion, along with Jordan Urban who Lederman says “will be a very good player in the near future. He made himself available whenever he wasn’t on county duty, but didn’t get a chance to bat regularly due to the top order firing so regularly. When called upon, he bowled and batted very well and is certainly is one to look out for next season.”
LMV chairman Terry Hyman commented: “It was always going to be a tough year, with the Maccabiah playing havoc with availability. In the circumstances the 1st XI has done brilliantly to gain promotion in the Chess Valley League. The 2nds, not surprisingly, were relegated in the Middlesex Sunday League.”
Looking ahead to next season, Hyman commented: “We hope to recruit some new players to give some extra strength in depth. Retaining our status as the strongest all-Jewish team is paramount in our philosophy.
“The colts section remains vibrant and we are looking to have under-9’s join our indoor nets sessions which recommence on January 13 at Yavneh School in Borehamwood.”
It was a testing campaign for MAL, but they still managed to finish above LMV in the Middlesex Sunday League.
Mark Landau was the stand-out performer with the bat. Having successfully managed the Maccabi GB Junior cricket team, he made significant contributions, finishing with 255 runs from five innings.
Team GB Open star Yoav Lebens had a good season with the ball, chipping in with12 wickets, but it was youngster Binyomin Feinemesser who made giant strides, taking nine wickets in three games, including an excellent spell of 7-12 against Rajput Saraj.
BELMONT & EDGWARE CC
Belmont & Edgware captain Ryan Monk praised the father and son team of Elliot Mayer and Phil Mayer in a season where the club won 50 per cent of their fixtures.
With many predicting a testing campaign, the decision to go forward as a one-club team appears to have paid dividends as the club approaches its 40th anniversary.
Vice-captain Adam Jacobs enjoyed his best season with bat and ball as the club defeated old rivals Southgate and Chigwell, as well as several non-Jewish teams. Jacobs fired 250 runs at 31.25, with a top score of 76. Monk said: “Adam stepped up to the plate with the ball, bowling a great line and length, with great accuracy”.
The Mayers gave the team solid foundations in several matches, with Elliot blasting his first century for the club. He finished the season with 316 runs to his name, at an average of 45.14. Indeed it was something of a family affair, with Mitchell Mayer and Greg Mayer inspiring with bat and ball.
Monk was also keen to mention Keith Aizen, Nick Mcleod and Simon Taylor and stalwart Michael Blasebalk.
“Overall it was a wonderful season all round and the future looks good for BECC,” said Monk. “Looking ahead to
2014, he said: “We’ll be marking our 40th year with a special game between members past and present.”
SALFORD JEWISH CRICKET CLUB
Co-captain Jonny Wineberg was delighted with his team’s strong finish to the season despite a lowly standing in the GMACL Division Three table.
“We had a number of absentees at the beginning of the season, but came together for the last few games, picking
up a great win against the cup finalists,” said Wineberg.
He was also pleased with his side’s fielding and bowling, claiming it was “some of the best in the division,” but conceded the team were let down by “inconsistent batting performances”.
The form of bowler Daniel Paul in particular was picked out as a highlight, with the strike bowler impressing with “consistent performances”. He ended the season with 22 wickets, including best figures of 4-8.
MANCHESTER CRICKET CLUB
Steven Glicher expressed “delight” following his side’s best season since joining the Greater Manchester Amateur League.
The team finished fourth in Division Three, only narrowly missing out on promotion. “It was a great team effort,” Glicher said. Player of the Year Huddy Lieberman impressed with both bat and ball, together with leading wicket taker David Cohen.
The Young Player of the Year award was shared between Josh Oehley and Dan Glicher. As for the captain’s highlights, the “Supplementary Cup success, with a crushing win over Trinity is right up there, along with the one-wicket win over Wilmslow, achieved with a 14 and 15-year-old at the crease."