South Manchester Maccabi won the NJCL Twenty20 Cup after beating Salford in the final.
A hotly contested competition at Scholes Field in Gatley featured South Manchester, Manchester Maccabi, Salford and Leeds Maccabi.
South met rivals Maccabi in the first semi final of the day. The decision to insert Maccabi looked to have paid dividends as the Lieberman brothers, Akiva and Huddy, ripprf into the Maccabi top order, leaving them in a perilous state of 27-5, with Huddy taking 4-7.
The in-form Steven Allweis steadied the innings with an accomplished 36 not out taking Maccabi to a respectable 91.
South also made heavy weather of the wicket. The innings was anchored by Bobby Lieberman who hit 36 and was ably supported by Elliot Shiers who finished on 24 not out. However it was a close run game as South wickets fell at regular intervals and they nervously reached their target for the loss of eight wickets and scraping home with a few balls to spare.
Salford beat Leeds by 70 runs in the other semi. Leeds inserted Salford but they were immediately regretting their decision as Andrew Niman smashed 31 from the first five overs. His departure brought Elliot Koffman to the crease. One of the most destructive batsmen in the league, Koffman was afforded the luxury of being dropped three times, once on six and again on 20 before he got going. He made the most of his luck blasting 65 including five sixes. This helped Salford reach 143 after 20 overs.
Leeds were up with the rate in the first over when Daniel Goldsbrough blasted 18 in the first five balls but when he was bowled on the final ball of the first over, nine-man Leed’s challenge was all but over. Johnny Wineberg batted on for 31 but it was all in vain as Leeds were bowled out for 73.
The final turned out to be a one-sided affair. A fine opening spell from Rosenblum soon had Salford top-order reeling with Niman, Korn and Marks soon back in the pavilion. Rosenblum finished his spell with fine figures of 3-6.
Akiva Lieberman joined the attack and showed real pace. A magical over featured a hat trick to finish off the Salford innings. Lieberman finished with excellent figures of 4-7 as Salford were skittled for 38. Dover (15) was Salford’s only batsman to reach double figures.
South cantered to victory in 5.4 overs for the loss of one wicket with skipper Steve Glicher and Barry Price smashing the Salford attack around the park.
Maccabi won the 3rd/4th playoff after beating Leeds by 75 runs. Having been edged out in the first semi, last year's champions were playing for pride and 3rd place against an enthusiastic Leeds side.
Leeds won the toss and elected to bowl on a poor quality pitch. This proved to be a wise move as Manchester lost three early wickets to the accurate bowling of Jonny Wineberg and Johnny Dobkin, including the scalp of Simon Jeffries for 19.
The game was then turned on its head from the sixth over when skipper Ray Tammam joined fellow all-rounder Steven Allweis at the crease. They swung the balance of the game in Maccabi's favour putting with a 100-run partnership in little more than 10 overs with a procession of boundaries that the Yorkshiremen had no answer to.
Allweis reached his second unbeaten 50 of the season, and Tammam added an impressive 37 not out as Maccabi finally ended their innings with a strong 142-4 with Dan Goldsborough picking up the last wicket. Most economical bowler for Leeds was Ross.
In reply, Leeds struggled from early on though Goldsborough and Smaje put up some early resistance, but they struggled against the accurate bowling of Max Davies, Daniel Franks and Jake Woolfstein, combined with superb wicket-keeping from Nigel Woolfstein and Simon Jeffries who shared those duties.
Dan Crystal put up some more resistance with some excellent shots, but Ray Tammam's spin ended the innings of three Leeds batsmen to leave Maccabi the victors.
The teams return to NJCL action this weekend with South taking on Maccabi at St. Paul’s in the big title decider and Salford facing Leeds at Scholes Field.