Young Israel Thunder made it three wins out of four to climb off the bottom of the table following victories over Redwood (101-116), PDCC (120-73) and KCJ (85-94).
The loss came against Ilan Peretz's very impressive Gold 'A' (145-58), with Sholem Hack winning the man of the match for his overall performance of 2-5 and 22 runs with the bat, while peretz top sored with 29 and Avron Olwyn, who had just joined Ra'anana Cricket Club for the upcoming outdoor season, finished with 3/-2.
Young Israel Thunder's, Amir Mizroch, playing in his first game for five years, ripped the heart out of KCJ's batting by taking three wickets in an over to win the bowler of the match, while the real hero in the Young Israel Thunder team was 13-year-old Gabi Glass, who keeps improving each game.
Glass hit Israel international bowler Josh Evans for a four over his head to get his team over the line against Redwood. He then showed maturity beyond his years by sharing a 50-run stand with former Israel captain/coach Herschel Gutman against KCJ in a match which ebbed and flowed through the whole game.
However, KCJ put in a superb performance and continued in their mad last-minute dash to make the finals by convincingly trouncing one of the favourites to win the league, Gold A'.
Gold A' won the toss and elected to bat. The first pair managed to put on 33 runs, without the loss of a wicket. After taking three wickets in one over in his previous game, Levitan's bowling did not faze the batsmen and Codron was able to launch a big six straight down the ground, which probably should have been caught if the fielders had been on their toes.
The second session was perhaps the turning point of the innings. Fiddler, Bloom and Buchbinder came to the fore in style and destroyed the second pair who finished with a score of minus 11. Buchbinder took two wickets in this session and finished with figures of 2/-5, which earned him the best bowler award.
The third pair put on a tough fought 32 runs, despite losing three wickets, of which Berkowitz took two. The Perez brothers came in last and methodically and calculatedly brought the total up to a competitive 96 runs. Ilan Perez's 22 runs earned him the best batter award.
KCJ's run chase began a little shaky with the loss of three wickets in the first session. The confident hitting of Fiddler with ample support provided by Flacks though, ensured that they were still able to make a decent 25 runs.
From then on, it was smooth sailing and undeterred and with great poise, KCJ's supreme batting lineup leisurely cruised home.
Gold squandered some of its chances, including a crucial dropped catch of Bloom in the third session during the powerplay, when he jabbed at a ball which ballooned up to short mid-off. However, what put the cherry on the cake, was a remarkable innings in the third session by Berkowitz. In particular, when Gold countered Berkowitz's series of sweep shots and positioned three players behind the line of the stumps on the leg side(!), Berkowitz ingeniously played a reverse sweep shot into the wide open gap on the other side of the field.
He finished with 21 runs and bowling figures of 2-8, and was awarded man of the match. In the final session, Levitan and Gluck quickly buried Gold's desperation for a win and the game was already over by the end of the 13th over, with KCJ ending up with 119 runs.
In the post-match interview, Gluck praised his players and said that they "showed great resilience all the way through the match. Our bowling was consistent and our batting was superb."
Gluck was also quick to acknowledge the enormity of the win: "Gold are a top side and always finish the season first or second. We made them look mediocre tonight and they'll be hurting from that loss."
Looking ahead, knowing Gold, they will for sure re-group and begin to intensify their preparations for the finals coming up next month. KCJ will be closely watching the upcoming match of Young Israel Thunder against Modshem as this result could make or break their finals dreams.
The upcoming matches sees Young Israel Thunder come up against Redwood and Modshem as every team can still mathematically qualify for the playoffs. The season is heading to an epic finale.