Vijay Hazare Trophy: Assam stuns Punjab; Railways, Vidarbha win

Arup Das’s early strikes was monumental in Assam’s surprising victory over Punjab. Apoorv Wankhede’s half-century guided Vidarbha to a winning total of 251 against Baroda while Hitesh Kadam’s four-wicket haul set up Railways’ win over Haryana.

Arup Das struck thrice in his first three overs to put Punjab on the backfoot.   -  PTI

A spirited Assam made its presence felt by pulling off a three-wicket victory over Punjab to complete the day of the underdogs in the group A of Vijay Hazare trophy in New Delhi on Sunday.

Railways and Vidarbha bounced back after opening-day defeats and beat pre-match favourites Baroda and Haryana, respectively. Six out of seven teams in the group have four points each.

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Among the three winners, the standout performance came from Assam, which opened its campaign against an upbeat Punjab.

Opting to bat, Punjab was tottering at 19 for three in the sixth over. Arup Das, in his first three overs, scalped openers Manan Vohra and Mandeep Singh, and Yuvraj Singh.

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Shubman Gill (121) and Gurkeerat Mann (58) resurrected Punjab with a 141-run stand for the fourth wicket. But Assam clawed back to bowl Punjab out for 243.

Assam’s chase was well paced with opener Pallavkumar Das laying the foundation with a 48 before Amit Verma (65) and Arun Karthick (63) added 92 runs for the fourth wicket to turn the tide in their team’s favour.

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At the Karnail Singh Stadium, where play was delayed by an hour due to a wet pitch, Vidarbha beat Baroda by 22 runs in a 45-over contest.

Vidarbha’s 251 for five was mainly due to a 98-run sixth-wicket stand involving Apoorv Wankhede and Akshay Karnewar after skipper Faiz Fazal scored 58, opening the innings.

Thereafter, Baroda was left to rue the run-outs of top-scorer Aditya Waghmore and Saturday’s centurion Deepak Hooda. With Hardik Pandya (2) and Irfan Pathan (0) falling cheaply, Pinal Shah and last-man Babashafi Pathan added 32 runs to decrease the margin of defeat.

At the Palam ground, Railways, thanks to the timely strikes of left-arm spinner Hitesh Kadam (four for 38), eased to a 71-run victory over Haryana.

Just when Haryana looked on course of chasing down Railways’ 252, Kadam removed a well-set Rahul Tewatia (33) to end the 52-run sixth-wicket stand with Rahul Dagar (57). Two deliveries later, he sent back Joginder Sharma and later packed off Dagar. He put the finishing touches to Vidarbha’s big victory by disturbing the stumps of Mohit Sharma in the 38th over.

The scores:

At the Ferozeshah Kotla ground: Punjab 243 in 49.4 overs (Shubman Gill 121, Gurkeerat Mann 58, Arup Das three for 27, Pritam Das three for 59, Abu Nechim two for 62) lost to Assam 247 for seven in 48.4 overs (Amit Verma 65, Arun Karthick 63, Pallav Das 48, Sandeep Sharma three for 52, Harbhajan Singh two for 42) by three wickets.

Toss: Punjab; Points: Assam 4 (0), Punjab 0 (4).

At the Karnail Singh Stadium: Vidarbha 251 for five in 45 overs (Apoorv Wankhede 62 not out, Faiz Fazal 58, Akshay Karnewar 54 not out, Abhishek Chaurasia 25, Babashafi Pathan two for 44) beat Baroda 229 in 42.4 overs (Aditya Waghmode 79, Krunal Pandya 43, Pinal Shah 36, Yash Thakur three for 64, Ravikumar Thakur two for 24, Akshay Karnewar two for 48) by 22 runs.

Toss: Vidarbha; Points: Vidarbha 4 (4), Baroda 0 (4).

At the Air Force ground, Palam: Railways 252 for seven in 50 overs (Arindam Singh 76, Pratham Singh 51, Mahesh Rawat 31, Asad Pathan 29, Rahul Tewatia two for 46, Harshal Patel two for 58, Mohit Sharma two for 60) beat Haryana 181 in 38 overs (Rahul Dagar 57, Rahul Tewatia 33, Rajat Paliwal 32, Hitesh Kadam four for 38, Amit Mishra two for 21) by 71 runs.

Toss: Railways. Points: Railways 4 (4), Haryana 0 (4)