Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy: Suryakumar hits fifty, Mumbai registers fourth straight win

In-form Mumbai skipper Suryakumar Yadav scored a brilliant fifty as Mumbai beat Pondicherry to record its fourth straight win in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy.

Suryakumar Yadav scored a match-winning half-century.   -  Vijay Soneji

The fall of Pondicherry’s Paras Dogra in the 14th over allowed leeway for Mumbai to force its fourth win in as many games in a Group ‘D’ league match of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy Twenty20 tournament at the Wankhede Stadium on Tuesday.

Mumbai’s remaining league  matches are against Bengal, Meghalaya and Assam and barring a major hiccup, the Suryakumar Yadav-led side should advance to the super league - knock out stage to be played in Surat from November 21.

Mumbai made significant changes in the team sheet for its fourth match, bringing in Shreyas Iyer, Shivam Dube and Shardul Thakur for Sarfaraz Khan, Sujith Nayak and Dhawal Kulkarni.

Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy | As it Happened

The completion of the T20 series against Bangladesh had facilitated the trio's return for a domestic tournament and they made small contributions to their side.

But it was skipper Yadav who once again played a champion-like knock for his team to set a stiff target of 172 for Pondicherry.

After the fall of Jay Bista and Aditya Tare immediately after the six over powerplay, Yadav forged a stand of 49 for the third wicket with Iyer and 55 for the fourth wicket with Siddhesh Lad.

These two profitable stands enabled the home team to set an exactingly work for the South team to chase at 8.6 an over.

Yadav (57, 37b, 6 x 4, 3 x 6) hit on the midriff twice by seamers, demonstrated a calm mind and terrific skill to accelerate the run rate before falling to Sagar Trivedi, a local turning out as a professional for Pondicherry, in the 20th over.

Trivedi struck three times in the last over, taking the wickets of Yadav, Lad and Dubey, to finish his fine effort at four for 29.

Solid start

Pondicherry began well with K.B. Arun Karthik in good nick and after his departure, Dogra threatened hitting some big shots.

But after pummeling three fours and as many sixes and after a roaring stand of 51 for the third wicket with Subramanian Anand, the former Himachal Pradesh batsman, holed out an easy catch to Thakur.

Dogra’s dismissal enlivened the Mumbai Bowling to take charge of the match and win by 27 runs.

In the first match played at the same venue, Meghalaya scored an upset win against Assam, with Punit Bisht scoring a weighty 42.

Brief scores

Mumbai 171 for 6 in 20 overs (Jay Bista 29, Suryakumar Yadav 57, Siddhesh lad 39, Sagar Trivedi 4 for 29) beat Pondicherry 144 for 7 in 20 overs (K.B. Arun Karthik 27, Paras Dogra 45, S. Anand 39, Shams Mulani 2 for 25, Tushar Deshpande 2 for 29)

Assam 108 for 7 in 20 overs (Sibsankar Roy 50, Abu Nechim 26 not out, Raja Biswa 2 for 14, Sanjay Yadav 2 for 14) lost to Meghalaya 110 for 6 in 18.5 overs (Raj Biswa 25, Punit Bisht 42, Phanindra Purkayastha 3 for 17)