T20 Mumbai: Arjun Tendulkar, Shams Mulani's all-round efforts seal it for Tigers

Arjun Tendulkar picked three wickets and scored a quickfire 28 for Tigers; Mulani scored an unbeaten 60 to guide the team to a six-wicket win.

Tigers' Arjun Tendulkar stifled the Panthers middle-order with three wickets on Monday.   -  Special Arrangement

All-rounders are as crucial in Twenty20 cricket as elections in a democracy. When two all-rounders deliver the goods for a team in the same game, seldom does the team ends up on the losing side. No wonder then that the Aakash Tigers MWS crossed the line without much trouble against North Mumbai Panthers in the second edition of T20 Mumbai on Monday.

Thanks to vital contributions by a proven performer in Shams Mulani (one for 33 & 60 n.o. off 31b, 3x4, 4x6) and promising youngster Arjun Tendulkar (three for 27 & 28 off 24b, 4x4), the Tigers first restricted the Panthers to 169 for six before overhauling the target with four balls and six wickets to spare.

Panthers were struck with a crucial blow even before the toss, with captain Prithvi Shaw ruled out of the game due to a hip injury he sustained on Sunday. However, stand-in captain Vikrant Auti (52 off 37b, 6x4, 1x6) and debutant Vishal Dhagaonkar (46 off 26b, 4x4, 3x6) gave the team a rampaging start.

Shams Mulani came good with the bat and scored an unbeaten 60 against North Mumbai Panthers on Monday.   -  Special Arrangement

The 94 runs the duo added before Dhagaonkar holed out in the deep off Mulani in the ninth over had set the foundation for a 200-plus total for the Panthers. However, Tendulkar - who had largely struggled to justify his high price tag in the first three games - struck decisive blows in the death. While he struck twice in the 16th over to start the Tigers’ comeback, he returned in the 19th to get rid of a well-set Karan Nande.

Opening the innings for the second time in succession, Tendulkar made use of the Powerplay despite losing wickets at the other end. After attempting one shot too many off captain Auti in the eighth, Tendulkar made way for the left-hand batsman Mulani.

After losing D. Subramanian in the 12th over, Mulani found support in Suryansh Shedge. With Shedge preferring to keep his wickets intact, Mulani accelerated the chase to perfection. It was fitting that immediately after completing a breezy fifty, Mulani ended the game with two lusty blows off veteran leg-spinner Pravin Tambe the first two balls of the last over.

Dias does the trick for Knights

Left-arm pacer Royston Dias registered the best bowling figures of the tournament while Suryakumar Yadav and Parikshit Valsangkar struck an unbroken 106-run partnership for the third wicket to help defending champion Triumph Knights Mumbai North East thump Shivaji Park Lions by eight wickets and 26 balls to spare.

Brief scores: North Mumbai Panthers 169/6 in 20 overs (Vikrant Auti 52, Vishal Dhagaonkar 46, Karan Nande 25; Arjun Tendulkar 3/27) lost to Aakash Tigers MWS 171/4 in 19.2 overs (Shams Mulani 60*, Arjun Tendulkar 28, Suryansh Shedge 27*, D. Subramanian 26).

Shivaji Park Lions 125 for nine in 20 overs (Hardik Tamore 40, Siddhesh Lad 37, Royston Dias four for 26, Akash Parkar two for 15, Mohit Avasthi two for 29) lost to Triumph Knights Mumbai North East 126 for two in 15.4 overs (Suryakumar Yadav 56 n.o., Parikshit Valsangkar 52 n.o.).


Tuesday’s fixtures

3.30pm: SoBo Supersonics vs NaMo Bandra Blasters

7.30pm: ARCS Andheri vs Eagle Thane Strikers

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