Mushtaq Ali Trophy: Vidarbha stun Tamil Nadu

Two-season-old Jitesh Sharma scored a blazing 73 (47b, 9x4, 1x6) and veteran Faiz Fazal made 45 (37b, 6x4) as Vidarbha finished a deserving winner by seven wickets.

Ravi Jangid picked up two wickets for Vidarbha against Tamil Nadu.   -  PTI

A fine blend of youth and experience helped Vidarbha stun Tamil Nadu in a Group A clash of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy at the Vidarbha Cricket Association in Jamtha on Wednesday.

Two-season-old Jitesh Sharma scored a blazing 73 (47b, 9x4, 1x6) and veteran Faiz Fazal made 45 (37b, 6x4) as Vidarbha finished a deserving winner by seven wickets.

Chasing 151 for its second win of the tournament, Vidarbha raced to a brilliant start with Sharma and Fazal in the right frame of mind. If the former went after the bowlers at will, the latter kept things simple by punishing just the poor deliveries. They added 87 runs in 11.4 overs.

Sharma rode his luck to script a match-winning knock, marked by some well-timed shots, but Tamil Nadu’s performance in the fielding department left a lot to be desired.

When on 18, Sharma slog-swept skipper R Satish to deep midwicket where Vijay Shankar grassed the ball and also hurt his finger. He was duly replaced by the substitute fielder, Aswin Crist. A couple of overs later, Crist made a mess of a sitter in the same region.

Sharma didn’t offer any more freebies. In fact, he exploded after the departure of Fazal. A late cameo from Apoorva Wankhede, 17 off 13, took Vidarbha past the finish line.

Earlier, Tamil Nadu lost wickets at regular intervals before a late flourish from Satish (32, 17b, 2x4, 2x6) helped it post 150 for eight. Baba Aparajith top-scored with 41 (39b, 3x4), but two run-outs cost the team dear. Tamil Nadu also received a jolt when opener Srikanth Aniruda retired hurt for 14. In an attempt to complete the second run, the burly opener dived wildly at the non-striker’s end before limping off.

Tamil Nadu, which has eight points from three matches, finds itself in the second spot on the points table. It will take on table-toppers Gujarat (12) on Thursday.

Vihari leads from the front

Skipper Hanuma Vihari smashed 44 runs off 28 balls (4x4, 2x6) before registering figures of 3-0-13-2 as Hyderabad beat Haryana by 35 runs on Wednesday. Haryana skipper Virender Sehwag had another poor day at the office. He was dismissed by Vihari for nine runs off five balls. Interestingly, his returns in this tournament have been 3, 1 and 9.

Parthiv powers Gujarat to the top

Parthiv Patel scored his second fifty in as many games as Gujarat thumped Bengal by eight wickets on Wednesday. Gujarat has now won three of its four games, and is placed at the top of Group A.

BRIEF SCORES

Tamil Nadu 150 for eight in 20 overs (B Aparajith 41, R Sathish 32; Ravi Jangid two for 32, Ravi Thakur two for 22) lost to Vidarbha 154 for three in 18.3 overs (Jitesh Sharma 73, Faiz Fazal 45; Rahil Shah two for 31)

Hyderabad 173 for eight in 20 overs (Akash Annabathula 25, Akshath Reddy 43, Hanuma Vihari 44; Yuzvendra Chahal three for 43, Amit Mishra two for 27) beat Haryana 138 for seven in 20 overs (Nitin Saini 30, Himanshu Rana 31, Amit Mishra 28 n.o.; Mohammed Siraj two for 34, Hanuma Vihari two for 13)

Bengal 101 all out in 20 overs (Debabrata Das 22, Ashoke Dinda 22; Jasprit Bumrah three for 16, Rohit Dahiya three for 14) lost to Gujarat 104 for two in 11.5 overs (Parthiv Patel 52)