Duleep Trophy: India Red romps to victory

After restricting India Red to 208 – 21 runs added to the overnight score – India Blue, faced with a target of 393, came a cropper against the spin duo of Washington Sundar and Vijay Gohil and lost the contest by 163 runs.

Washington Sundar, who made useful contributions with the bat in both innings, returned figured of 6 for 87.   -  Rajeev Bhatt

India Red faced little resistance from India Blue and wrapped up the Duleep Trophy final with a day to spare at the Ekana Stadium here on Thursday. After restricting India Red to 208 – 21 runs added to the overnight score – India Blue, faced with a target of 393, came a cropper against the spin duo of Washington Sundar and Vijay Gohil and lost the contest by 163 runs.

The wear and tear factor came into play as the pitch presented increasing challenges as the day progressed. Batting was a nightmare as the ball often reared from good length and to give off-spinner Washington (6/87) and left-arm spinner Gohil (3/102) a flattering reputation. Washington’s ability to hit the deck and Gohil, with his variety, caused acute embarrassment to the opponents. Washington incidentally made the best Duleep Trophy ever with a match haul of 11 for 181.

Day 2 report

Barring the phase when skipper Suresh Raina and Manoj Tiwary faced the bowlers with confidence the India Blue was only fighting to delay the end result. Lack of footwork stood out sorely as India Blue batsmen offered tentative . Washington and Gohil concentrated on making the batsmen play and their accuracy on a more than responsive pitch was richly rewarded.

Bhargav Bhatt put the long handle to good use later and struck a 41-ball 51 (one four and five sixes) but his dismissal was bizarre. Taking evasive action from a shot at silly point, Prithvi Shaw deflected the ball for Suryakumar Yadav to take a return catch. For his excellent all-round show, Washington was declared the `Man of the Match’.

The scores

India Red 483 and 208 (Indrajith 59, Washington 42; Wakhare 4 for 66, Bhatt 4 for 77) beat India Blue 299 and 229 (Bhatt 51, Raina 45, Tiwary 38; Washington 6 for 87, Gohil 3 for 102) by 163 runs.

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