Lower order batsmen Andrew Greenwall Cohen and Gideon Gale maintained London Maccabi Vale 2nd’s Middlesex Sunday League Division Three status with a gripping two-wicket win over West Middlesex.
Skipper Jonathan Lederman won an incredible 11th toss out of 12 this season, and duly inserting West Middx, in the knowledge that LMV had a lizard's tail (twice as long as it's body apparently).
A low-scoring contest saw LMV dismiss WM for 74 in 23 overs. Immediate rewards for good bowling from Andrew Greenwall-Cohen (1-11) and Benjamin Lederman (1-16), was followed up by all the other bowlers as Jonathan Freedman (2-6), Adam Morris (1-14), Gideon Gale (1-10), Saul Freedman (1-8) and finally Lederman in his new guise as the "Lederator" two wickets and turning the ball almost square.
Although a low score it was probably worth about 20 per cent more as the ball continually got lost in the jungle that was the Rowley Lane outfield, however it should still have proved a straightforward chase.
Opening with Paul Buckton and Laurie Briggs, LMVimmediately lost a wicket as Laurie was bowled off his pads. This bought Avi Schwarz to the crease and he and Bucky played out easily as LMV headed towards tea. Schwarz was then given out to a debatable LBW decision and tea was taken at 18-2. Having had an excellent tea and celebrated Benoit Assou-Ekotto's rocket, to be fair Gideon didn't celebrate much, LMV went back out to knock off the runs.
After tea Buckton resumed with Jeza "quiet boy" Harris but Bucky was soon heading back to the pavilion, bowled for only 7, leaving LMV on a precarious 27-3.
Captain Jonathan Lederman joined Harris and the score started to move on as the opening bowlers finished their spells. Having taken the score to 58, Lederman (20) inexplicably tried to hit a wide ball over cover but only succeeded in spooning it to cover.
What followed was straight out of the "how not to bat" manual, as 58-4 became 59-7 and then 61-8, as Harris, a couple of Freedmans and another Lederman all perished to a mixture of poor shots and pad instead of bat.
This bought Andrew GC and Gideon Gale together and fortunately for LMV they played very carefully and with no trouble to take us over the finishing line at 75-8.
With only 47 runs coming off the bat we were fortunate that Mr "Extras" made the top score of the day with 28, for us, otherwise things could have turned out very different.
Only one league game to go, can't finish bottom, can't get promoted, but still points to play for on Sunday week.