An unbeaten 70 from Yoav Lebens helped MAL maintain their winning start to the season as they eased past title rivals Casual Nomads in the Maccabi Sunday League.
In a match moved to Mill Hill after Shenley was deemed unplayable due to the rain, Nomads were asked to bat first. Openers Mark Aziz and captain Richard Ferrer started well until the latter was run out by Lebens with the score on 39.
Anthony Wise soon accounted for Daniel Samson before Aziz and Daniel Coffer added some quick runs. Yoni Fidler joined the attack to remove the dangerous Coffer before Nomads lost momentum as Finlay gloved a vicious delivery from Grant Traub to Mark Landau at slip.
With the score on 139-4 and 12 overs remaining, Nomads looked capable of setting an imposing total but an inspired bowling change saw Simon Levy pick up two wickets with consecutive balls.
Having batted well and done the hard work, Aziz flicked one straight to square leg and went for 48.
Next ball Yechiel Sulzbacher found mid-on and was caught by Adam Katten. Some late resistance came from the big-hitting Oscar Brodkin who smashed 32 before falling to Levy going for one big shot too many. Levy finished with 3-17.
Traub was again in the wickets with 3-31 and Fidler’s hostility saw him pick up 2-37, though MAL were never at their best with the ball or in the field. Nomads were bowled out for 166 in the 37th over.
MAL’s reply started in stuttering fashion with Norman Marine and Sulzbacher finding the right length straight away. Landau could only fend a ball to gully second ball of the innings before Wise was bowled by Moshe Sulzbacher.
With the rain falling and the light fading, MAL looked to be in trouble but an excellent rebuilding job from Gideon Caller and Yoav Lebens took them to 59-2 after 19 overs, with the game still very much in the balance.
Tight spells from Brodkin and Yechtel Sulzbacher kept MAL in check.
With more than a hundred required, Elliott Unsdorfer joined Lebens and put on 108 in only 68 balls. Fours and sixes were hit to all parts of the ground with a total of five balls being lost.
Lebens finished unbeaten on 72 from 63 balls, Unsdorfer notched up his first-ever half century, as saw the match out after facing 36 balls.
The win maintained MAL’s perfect record and puts them in pole position to retain the title, though Nomads proved that they have the ability to push them all the way.
Maccabi Sunday League
Casual Nomads 166 Mark Aziz 48, Grant Traub 3-31, Simon Levy 3-17
MAL 167-3 Yoav Lebens 70
MAL won by 7 wickets
Sedgley 48 all out Huddi Lieberman 3-9, Harry Rosenblum 3-18
South Manchester Maccabi 50-0 Shaya Rabinowitz 30 not out
South won by 10 wickets
South 25 points, Sedgley 0
Midweek Twenty20 League
Bats and Balls 128-5
MAL 129-4 Tali Rowe 48, Yoav Lebens 47
MAL won by 6 wickets