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Mumbai Challengers rewrite the history books

    The Mumbai Challengers rounded off a superb weekend with two fantastic results. The first of the night was a very close affair as they beat Modi'in Young Lions by 10 runs. The second match produced the leagues highest team score, of 194 and the leagues highest partnership, of 77 between David Dhokarkar and Allon Benjamin.

    Batting first against MYL, only Elan Umederkar and Uriel Sampson got to grips with the bowling, scoring 32 between them. For MYL, Gershon Massil, Niv Nagavkar, Shai Bangera and Eshkol Solomon all took two wickets apiece. Needing 36 runs from the final two overs and with Israeli international players, Solomon and Bangera at the wicket, it looked as if MYL were on their way to a victory, but a mix-up between the batsmen lead to a run out and effectively handed the game to Mumbai for their first win of the season.

    It got even better in their second game as they put the winless Yagod Morris Cricket 'B' to the sword with a devastating display of batting amassing 194. Benjamin and Dhokarkar were rampant and only a second wicket for debutant Richard Garside restricted MC to under 200.

    It was always going to be a tough ask for YMCB, but full credit to them as they reached 87, with Adam Finkelstein and captain Joe Neppe scoring 37 runs between them.

    YMCA remain unbeaten in the league after a feisty win against the Ra'anana Raiders who suffered defeat for the first time of the season.

    Ra'anana captain Josh Evans won the toss and elected to bowl first and would have been slightly disappointed as YMCA notched up 98, with captain Brett Hickson and youngster Yair Nagavkar top scoring with a partnership of 35. For Ra'anana, Josh Foley-Comer and Ziv Gould took wickets each.

    Ra'anana's run chase started off superbly with young Rafi Davidson and Foley Comer sharing a 35-run stand, but with Chopper Harris, Sol Talkar and Aryeh Myers sharing two wickets each, they fell behind the run rate. With 34 needed in the final four overs and Evans and Gidi Hilkowitz at the crease, it was anyone's game, but up stepped captain Hickson who took three wickets, helped by a fantastic one-handed catch off the fence by young Nagavkar swayed the momentum YMCA's way as Ra'anana fell 18 runs short.

    YMCA captain, Hickson admitted he was slightly nervous meeting the unknown youngsters from Ra'anana but was delighted that "every YMCA player contributed really well with bat, ball and in the field". He was also full of praise for 12-year-old, Yair Nagavkar, saying that "he batted and bowled with maturity while causing an important run out by means of a direct hit from far out. Yair will definitely be a future star of Israeli cricket. The Raiders will beat a lot of good teams along the way. So watch out league."

    In the earlier game, a very young Bet Shemesh Braves, fresh from their shock win last week, suffered a heavy loss to Ra'anana Raiders. BSB batted first and scored 53 as Liron Gordon, Foley Comer and debutant Noad Klein taking two wickets each. The Raiders were never in trouble, even after two superb catches, first by Uriel Finkelstein and then Yehonatan Schechterman as they scored 133 with debutant Klein scoring an impressive 25 runs.

    On Thursday, league leaders, the Kiddush Club Jerusalem take on the Pommeranz Juice Good Old Boys and later on that evening, Pommeranz come up against second placed YMCA in what should be a tough night for the Good Old Boys.

    Saturday night dishes up two Bet Shemesh derbies as the Braves take on Gold Insurance Bet Shemesh Lightning and KAT Israemploy take on the Bet Shemesh Royals.

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