Vijay Hazare Trophy: Andhra punishes dismal Delhi; Saurashtra gets past stubborn Baroda

Andhra coasted to a comfortable win, while Saurashtra successfully chased a tricky target.

Andhras Siva Kumar (third right) celebrates with his team-mates after dismissing Delhi's Gautam Gambhir.

A resolute Andhra Pradesh handed out a resounding six-wicket drubbing to a listless Delhi and Saurashtra overcame a stubborn Baroda following a three-wicket verdict in the last two quarterfinals of the Vijay Hazare (50-over) competition here.

Andhra, aided by some poor stroke-selection of the Delhi batsmen, bundled out the host for just 111 and then chased down the target to stretch its unprecedented winning sequence to seven matches. This
coincided with Delhi’s third straight loss.

After the start was delayed by 30 minutes owing to poor visibility – the contest reduced to 49 overs-a-side – at the Air Force ground, Palam, Andhra opted to field and didn’t have to wait long for the procession of the Delhi batsmen to commence.

Unmukt Chand and Gautam Gambhir departed in the first five overs, falling to Siva Kumar, after misreading the bounce offered by the pitch. Andhra kept up the pressure and Delhi continued to lose wickets at regular intervals.

Read: Delhi looks to Gambhir in quarterfinal clash against Andhra

The fifth-wicket stand between Dhruv Shorey (21) and Rishabh Pant (38) looked promising but once this 36-run association ended, with Shorey’s stumping, Andhra appeared on course to restrict Delhi to its lowest
total of the season.

Pant’s dismissal after he failed to clear Bhargav Bhatt, manning the midwicket boundary, in the 26th over, reflected poorly on the batsman’s reading of the situation. He became Siva’s fourth victim. Soon, Delhi’s tail folded without waging for long.

Andhra, in spite of losing two wickets with just 11 runs on the board, reached the finish-line in the 29th over. Ashwin Hebbar (38, 4x4) and Ricky Bhui (36, 5x4) added 54 runs for the third wicket and later, B. Sumanth (25 not out, 4x4) was around to see the team through.

At the Ferozeshah Kotla ground, Saurashtra battled all the way to subdue Baroda.

After Baroda rallied from 107 for seven to reach 247 for eight in 50 overs, Saurashtra held its nerves to chase down the target.

The hero of Baroda’s fight-back was Soaeb Tai, who scored an unbeaten 72 (91b, 8x4, 1x6) after coming in at No. 9! With Krunal Pandya, who scored a 75-ball 61 (5x4, 2x6), Tai added 97 runs for the eighth wicket and another 45 with Lukman Meriwala for the unfinished ninth-wicket stand.

Saurashtra, riding on a 102-run third-wicket stand involving opener Avi Barot (82, 105b, 8x4) and Cheteshwar Pujara (40, 66b), lost its way a bit after the duo along with Prerak Mankad fell in the space of 34 runs, with the score being 181 for five.

But Baroda’s rising hopes were dashed by Aarpith Vasavada’s timely, unbeaten 45 (43b, 5x4) who also stitched up a 40-run sixth-wicket partnership with Chirag Jani. Though Baroda scalped two more wickets,
Vasavada and Shaurya Sanandia took Saurashtra over the line.

Brief scores:

At the Air Force ground, Palam: Delhi 111 in 32.1 overs (Siva Kumar four for 29) lost to Andhra Pradesh 112 for four in 28.4 overs by six wickets.

At the Ferozeshah Kotla ground: Baroda 247 for eight in 50 overs (Soaeb Tai 72 not out, Krunal Pandya 61, Chirag Jani four for 35) lost to Saurashtra 251 for seven in 48.4 overs (Avi Barot 82, Aarpit Vasavada 45 not out, Cheteshwar Pujara 40, Atit Sheth three for 38) by three wickets.