Vijay Hazare Trophy: Hyderabad beats Jharkhand for fourth straight win

Put in to bat, Hyderabad struggled on a slow wicket offering uneven bounce and scored 203 for eight before its bowlers got Jharkhand out at 182.

Mehdi Hasan picked up three wickets in Hyderabad's win over Jharkhand.   -  V. V. Subrahmanyam

Hyderabad continued to benefit from its disciplined bowling as it successfully defended a low target to beat Jharkhand by 21 runs in a group D match of the Vijay Hazare Trophy here at the JU Salt Lake Campus ground on Friday. This was the fourth straight win for Hyderabad, which brightened its chances of ensuring a knock-out berth.

Put in to bat, Hyderabad struggled on a slow wicket offering uneven bounce and scored 203 for eight before its bowlers got Jharkhand out at 182.

Hyderabad lost both the openers, Tanmay Agarwal (11) and Akshath Reddy (9), by the seventh over at 30. Sumanth Kolla and B. Sandeep put on 82 runs for the third wicket to take Hyderabad out of the woods. Kolla, the Hyderabad wicketkeeper, who had made an unbeaten 91 against Saurashtra in the tournament, showed his flair again in tackling Jharkhand's bowling attack to score 48 (76b, 4x4).

The slide started again after Kolla was dismissed at 112 for three. Captain S. Badrinath (9) could not do much; he was cleaned up by Jharkhand’s left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem. Sandeep soon followed his captain to the pavilion after scoring 43 (71b, 3x4) at 135 for five. Hyderabad's lower order somehow managed to take the team past 200.

Jharkhand lost Anand Singh and Virat Singh in the first over by pacer Ravi Kiran without a run on the scoreboard. Saurabh Tiwary resurrected with a fine mix of patience and aggression almost singlehandedly taking Jharkhand close to the target. He shared a 70-run stand with captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni for the fifth wicket.

Things appeared to be going Jharkhand’s way but Dhoni being clean bowled by left-arm spinner Mehdi Hasan turned things around in the 32nd over (as Jharkhand’s score stood at 138 for five). Hasan got Kaushal Singh and Shahbaz Nadeem in successive leg-before appeals to have Jharkhand tottering at 140 for seven by the 35th over. Tiwary, who made fine 102 hitting seven sixes and five boundaries, seemed to be bothered by a pull in the left leg that precipitated his departure and Jharkhand’s loss.

Brief scores: Hyderabad 203 for eight in 50 overs (Sumanth Kolla 48, B. Sandeep 43; Shahbaz Nadeem three for 27) bt Jharkhand 182 in 44.4 overs (Saurabh Tiwary 102, M.S. Dhoni 28; Mehdi Hasan three for 40).

At Eden Gardens: Saurashtra 279 for nine in 50 overs (Harvik Desai 48, Dharmendrasinh Jadeja 50, Sheldon Jackson 73, Chirag Jani 58; Pankaj Rao four for 34) bt Chhattisgarh 187 in 44 overs (Manoj Singh 55, Mohammad Kaif 32; Prerak Mankad three for 37).

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