Shubham Khajuria (109, 112b, 6x4, 6x6) and Rasikh Salam (4/23) served the first points for Jammu & Kashmir in the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2023 with a 75-run win against Delhi at the ADSA Railway Ground here on Wednesday.
Defending a commanding 300-run total, Rasikh Salam dented Delhi in the first over. Jonty Sidhu slashed hard on the third delivery and was pouched at point. In his next over, a back-of-a-length delivery snuck under Priyansh Arya’s swipe and trapped him leg-before.
Yash Dhull and Ayush Badoni steered the innings back on track with their association worth 76 runs. Badoni made the most of a half-tracker from Auqib Nabi and pummeled it to collect six runs in the sixth over.
The Delhi captain, Dhull, was proficient in picking gaps, his cut between point and short third man off Lone Naseer Muzaffar in the 9th over being one such instance. He put his wrists to use against left-arm off-spinner Vanshaj Sharma as well, piercing cover and mid-off to pocket four runs.
Dhull met his end, one short of 50, trying to emulate the same shot, only off a fuller delivery from Abid Mushtaq, which resulted in him chipping it to cover. One wicket brought another for Mushtaq as Badoni perished in attempting an inside-out loft.
At 88 for four, Himmat Singh and Anuj Rawat added 42 runs but when the latter holed out at short mid-wicket it was curtains for Delhi.
Lalit Yadav and Ishant Sharma added 53 runs for the ninth wicket to prolonge Delhi’s fight before Salam returned to remove both and seal the four points for J&K.
In the first essay, Ishant and Harshit Rana were on the money with their lines to ensure runs came at a premium.
The J&K skipper, Khajuria, got off the mark only in the sixth over, on the 12th delivery he faced as the side crawled to 35 runs in PowerPlay 1.
Their course correction started against the tweakers. Puri clobbered a full toss from Suyash Sharma over mid-wicket for six and punched through cover for four in the 16th over.
Three overs later, Puri slog-swept and late cut Suyash to collect another eight runs. But the opening stand was cut five short of a century when Puri handed a return catch trying to heave Badoni down the ground.
After Puri fell, it was Khajuria’s turn to go after Suyash, launching him for two massive slog-swept sixes. But the highlight came against Rana when Khajuria chipped a length ball over the bowler’s head before clipping another off his pads for two maximums. His punch through cover made it 19 runs from the over.
Khajuria met his end soon after getting the 98-ball ton to his name when Mayank Yadav sent his off stump for a toss.
Nabi braved a mini-collapse, which saw J&K lose four wickets for 12 runs, and with his 24-ball 44 got the side to 299/7.
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