Manchester Maccabi beat Bury & Whitefield by seven wickets to reach the last four of the Northern Jewish Cricket League Twenty20 Cup.
The holders were drawn to play Bury for the second time in cup ties this season. Due to fixture congestion, the game was played midweek and it was home side Bury who won the important toss meaning they would avoid batting in the poor light later on.
Maccabi started well though, with all-rounder Adam Goldstone grabbing two early wickets, but it was wily veteran Steven Pearlman who made the difference with a devastating spell of accurate bowling that yielded four Bury wickets in four overs for only eleven runs with only big-hitting Josh Rose (20) offering any resistance.
The home side pushed on towards three figures though led by captain Richard Blackston (13) and Shimon Harris (10 n.o.), but Ashley Landes and Steven Allweis joined Marc Williams in keeping the runs down and grabbing timely wickets leaving Bury falling short and ending on 84 all out from one ball short of their 20 overs.
With a strong batting line-up, Maccabi's biggest challenge seemed to be the fading light, starting their innings after 7.30pm but attacking Wayne Doyle took on the home side's attack with vigour, though Harris grabbed an early wicket to give Bury some hope.
Doyle's onslaught continued and he ended up with his highest score of the season - unbeaten on 32. Steven Allweis continued his recent good from with a quickfire 15 before Ross trapped him leg before, and it was left to Maccabi captain Ray Tammam who stuck two fours and a six as the darkness set in to end the match with five overs to spare to deservedly send them onto finals day in July.
The two sides meet again in the league this sunday.