From turning heads as teenage prodigies to losing their way in the labyrinth of international cricket, Parthiv Patel and RP Singh have seen it all. The heartening fact, though, is that the 30-year-olds are now bringing all that experience to the fore.
A week after they combined to help Gujarat defeat Delhi in the final of the Vijay Hazare Trophy in Bangalore, RP Singh and Parthiv turned on the style against Hyderabad in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy here on Monday. As a result, Gujarat registered its second win in three games to occupy the second spot in the points table.
At the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium in Civil Lines, Singh snuffed the life out of Hyderabad with amazing figures of 4-0-15-3 to ensure Hyderabad posted no more than 131 for seven.
Skipper Parthiv then played his role to perfection by smashing a 40-ball 70 (8x4, 3x6) as Gujarat won by three wickets. A flurry of wickets at the death set Gujarat’s collective pulse racing, but good sense prevailed and the deserving team won with three deliveries to spare.
RP struck in the first over by accounting for Akshath Reddy, who drove one straight to mid-off. By the time Parthiv brought him back, Hyderabad had eased its way to 75 for two in 11 overs. RP then made smart use of the slower ball to get rid of captain Hanuma Vihari (32, 31b, 3x4, 1x6) and Ashish Reddy (1) from either end to turn the match in Gujarat’s favour. Stationed behind the stumps, Parthiv was involved in both dismissals.
Chasing 132, Parthiv and fellow opener Priyank Panchal (32, 42b, 4x4) added 99 in 11.2 overs. Parthiv, who reached his half-century off 24 balls, was severe on left-arm seamer Chama Milind, who he carted for 19 runs, including an eye-catching pull for six, in the last over of the powerplay.
Bengal wins a thriller
Ashok Dinda (4-0-8-0) bowled a brilliant 19th over as Bengal held its nerve to register a two-run win over Himachal Pradesh. It was Bengal’s second win of the competition. Pragyan Ojha suffered a nasty fall while misjudging a skier in the deep. He injured his left shoulder and was rushed to hospital. Regular skipper Manoj Tiwary has been ruled out of the competition with a calf strain. Australia-bound Mohammed Shami sat out this game for no particular reason.
Sehwag flops, Vidarbha wins
Himanshu Joshi (61 n.o., 46b, 6x4, 2x6) guided Vidarbha to an eight-wicket win over Haryana. Batting at No. 4, Haryana skipper Virender Sehwag was dismissed leg-before for one run.
Hyderabad 131 for seven in 20 overs (Tanmay Agarwal 25, G. Hanuma Vihari 32; Rudra Pratap Singh three for 15, Jasprit Bumrah two for 30, Harshal Patel two for 20) lost to Gujarat 134 for seven in 19.3 overs (Parthiv Patel 70, Priyank Panchal 32; Mohammed Siraj two for 29, B. Sandeep two for 14)
Bengal 154 for six in 20 overs (Sudip Chatterjee 42, Pramod Chandila 70; Pankaj Jaiswal four for 26) beat Himachal Pradesh 152 for three in 20 overs (Prashant Chopra 74 n.o., Paras Dogra 52; Alok Pratap Singh two for 28)
Haryana 136 for eight in 20 overs (Mohit Hooda 65; Rajneesh Gurbani three for 24, Ravi Jangid three for 13) lost to Vidarbha 140 for two in 19.3 overs (Faiz Fazal 37, Himanshu Joshi 61 n.o.)