Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy| Gujarat drub Kerala by nine wickets; Easy win for M.P.; Bihar keeps Railways at bay
Fresh from IPL performances, Venkatesh Iyer and Avesh Khan shone bright in their team’s victory
Half centuries from Gujarat openers Priyank Panchal and debutant Saurav Chauhan slammed the door on Kerala with a nine-wicket drubbing in their Group D league encounter of Syed Mushtaq Ali (20-over) cricket tournament at the Air Force ground in Delhi on Wednesday.
Put in, Kerala could manage only 123/5 despite Sanju Samson’s unbeaten 43-ball 56 (3×4, 2×6). The Gujarat openers put on 113 by the 14th over before Panchal fell for a 46-ball 66, studded with eight boundaries and two sixes. Chauhan went on to complete his 50 (40 balls, 3×4, 2×6) and took Gujarat to a thumping victory with 27 deliveries to spare.
Two other matches, scheduled at the Ferozeshah Kotla ground, produced contrasting results. Madhya Pradesh chose to field and restricted Assam to 103 for nine before crossing the finish line with six wickets and six wickets to spare.
For Assam, only Abhishek Tiwari offered some resistance with a 41-ball 35 (3×4). Avesh Khan, fresh from the confidence gained from the recent IPL, made his presence felt with three wickets.
MP openers Venkatesh Iyer, who smashed eight boundaries in his 23-ball 37, and Kuldeep Gehi (34, 26b, 4×4, 2×6) raised 65 runs to set a firm foundation. For Assam, left-arm spinner Roshan Alam delayed the inevitable by taking three wickets.
Unlike Gujarat and M.P., Railways failed to chase down a target of 170. Against a resolute Bihar, Railways lost its way early and crashed to a 35-run loss.
Asked to bat, Bihar set a target of 170 after opener Bipin Saurabh’s 54-ball 72 (10×4, 1×6) and Babul Kumar’s 36 (27b, 3×4, 1×6). Railways lost six wickets for 67 runs. Abhijit Saket took out three frontline batters, before fellow medium pacer Hrishi Raj also scalped three.
Railways managed to reach 134 after a fighting 61 from opener Pratham Singh.
At Air Force ground: Kerala 123/5 in 20 overs (Sanju Samson 56 not out) lost to Gujarat 125/1 in 15.3 overs (Priyank Panchal 66, Saurav Chauhan 50). Toss: Gujarat.
At Ferozeshah Kotla ground: Assam 103/9 in 20 overs (Abhishek Tiwari 35, Avesh Khan 3/18) lost to Madhya Pradesh 105/4 in 14 overs (Venkatesh Iyer 37, Kuldep Gehi 34, Roshan Alam 3/20). Toss: Madhya Pradesh.
Bihar 169/4 in 20 overs (Bipin Saurabh 72, Babul Kumar 36) bt Railways 134 in 18 overs (Pratham Singh 61, Hrishi Raj 3/31). Toss: Railways.
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