Riding on Ankeet Bawane’s classy hundred, Maharashtra beat Hyderabad by three wickets in the Group B Vijay Hazare Trophy encounter here on Friday.
Needing five to win off the last over, Kartikeya Kak dismissed Nikhil Naik and Prashant Solanki off consecutive balls, but captain Kedar Jadhav kept his cool under pressure, playing a lofted cover-drive to seal the win with two balls to spare.
Chasing a towering 316-run target, Maharashtra was off to a solid start in the first five overs before Kak picked a wicket off his first ball when opener Om Bhosale edged an over-pitched delivery to the keeper.
Siddharth Mhatre inside-edged a yorker back onto his stumps four overs later to hand Kak his second wicket. After Kaushal Tambe fell for 38, Bawane (113, 108b, 12x4, 1x6) and Azim Kazi (80, 81b, 6x4, 4x6) put on a 166-run stand, off just 156 balls.
Kak castled Kazi in the 42nd over to keep Hyderabad in the game. The 27-year-old pacer completed his five-wicket haul in the last over but his team fell short of defending its total.
In the first essay, Hyderabad got off to a torrid start when Rohit Rayudu was run out for nought trying to steal a single at cover.
Tanmay Agarwal (103, 117b, 9x4, 1x6) and Captain Rahul Singh (69, 81b, 5x4, 2x6) rebuilt the innings, combining for a 156-run partnership in 161 balls.
Initially, Rahul took his time to get going, playing and missing a few outside the off-stump as the ball moved around a bit. Tanmay rotated the strike expertly at the other end to keep the scoreboard ticking.
Rahul got going against the spinners, playing the lofted cover-drive and the slog-sweep well to provide the impetus through the middle overs.
The skipper’s innings was cut short by a direct hit from Jadhav at the non-striker’s end. Nitesh Reddy departed soon after, trapped in front by the captain.
Aravelly Avanish Rao survived two chances off his first two balls before his leading edge found the fielder at point, off the bowling of Tambe.
Tanmay brought up his seventh Vijay Hazare Trophy hundred, the most for a batter from Hyderabad, by cutting a shortish ball from Jadhav to point. He became the third run-out victim of the innings after a lapse in communication with Rahul Buddhi.
Buddhi (58, 53b, 5x4, 2x6) and Ravi Teja (51, 33b, 4x4, 3x6) then accelerated at the death, despite Maharashtra bowlers’ attempts to bowl to a wide-yorker field, to take the team to 315, which was chased down by the opposition.
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