Abrahams boosts Leeds Maccabi's title hopes

Leeds Maccabi beat fellow title-chasers Horsforth Fairweather 1-0 to improve their hopes of finishing top of the Leeds Combination League.

After their opponents had dominated the opening stages, Leeds came back strongly and took the lead after half an hour when a quick counter-attack saw defender Steven Berke’s shot saved and the ball fell kindly for Colin Abrahams to half volley home from the edge of the area.

Goalkeeper Mark Miller pulled off a stunning save to keep Leeds in the game as the visitors pressed for an equaliser, but they could not find an equaliser, and had captain sent off for a two-footed challenge on Berke late on.

Ian Selwyn said: “It is still in our hands and we will have a better idea of where we stand in two weeks time when the other teams will have caught up on games played.”

Leeds now prepare for their Peter Morrison clash with Sporting JLGB this weekend as they attempt to qualify for the quarter-finals and win a meeting with Manchester Maccabi 1st.

Leeds should be high on confidence after seeing off Sporting’s league rivals Haroldeans 5-2 in the last round and winning the crucial league game with Horsforth and will go into the game as favourites.

Sporting lie fifth in the Joan Collins Premier Division and have shown that on their day they can beat anyone having been the first team in the league to beat leaders Manchester Maccabi 3rd this season.

Star man Rafi Bloom has been in particularly blistering form in recent months, and Selwyn is expecting a tough game.

“We are looking forward to the game and not taking it lightly. Sporting are one of the better sides in the MJSL. I think we’re probably evenly matched, it should be a good game.

"We will certainly need to improve on our last two performances if we want to beat them.”

Sporting manager Gavin Sharpe is similarly relishing a clash he describes as their ‘biggest of the season.’

“We are excited to play Leeds as it will probably be the biggest and one of the hardest games of the season. We will give it a go and hopefully pull off a cup shock and go through to the quarter-finals.”

    Last updated: 10:31am, March 1 2011