The first semi-final of the Barratts Maccabi Sunday League playoffs took place on Sunday, with Casual Nomads taking on MAL at Old Camdenians.
On a pitch that looked relatively lively, MAL skipper Mark Landau opted to bat to take advantage of good overhead conditions and a strong batting line up. The decision looked to have backfired early on as MAL slipped to 76-6 inside the first 20 overs, with only Yoav Lebens showing any resistance, his 35 including some crisp hitting.
The fall of the sixth wicket brought Elliott Unsdorfer in to join Charlie Sherrard, and the two put on a fantastic rescue job, scoring quickly and taking the game away from Nomads. They took the score up to 193 (Sherrard 83, Unsdorfer 31) with a brilliant century stand, before the tail quickly folded and MAL were all out for an imposing 195 with 2 overs to spare.
The total always looked to be too much for Nomads, particularly after they started very cautiously against Yoav Lebens' swingers, and Charlie Sherrard's metronomic line. Although neither picked up a wicket, they
effectively killed off the game with 8 over spells of 0-31 and 0-6 respectively.
Grant Traub then came on and span his wily left arm web, picking up 5-17 off his 8. At the other end Yoni Schurder was unlucky not to pick up a wicket or 2, before Tony Wise came on, and found some extravagant lift and movement, picking up 3-11 in 4 overs, including a fantastic stumping by Mel Corin, making a rare appearance whilst back from Israel.
Two run outs compounded Nomads difficulties, with only Jerome Roith getting into double figures, battling his way to 24, as they were dismissed for 90.
Another fantastic performance from MAL, who remain unbeaten in
competitve cricket this season.