Bengal claimed the Under-19 Cooch Behar Trophy 2016-17 season on the basis of a first innings lead in the drawn final against Delhi at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium. After bowling the opposition out for 314, Saurabh Singh (196 off 527 balls) anchored Bengal to a first innings lead. While the middle-order collapsed, he was ably complemented in the task by Kanishk Seth (91 off 212 balls).
Earlier, after Delhi elected to bat on their home turf, they were kept in check by the Akash Pandey-led attack. After Ishan Porel gave the first breakthrough with the wicket of Manjot Kalra with 85 runs on the board, the Bengal attack struck at regular intervals. After 50 runs, Akash accounted for Ankur Kaushik and ran through the middle order with Rajarshi Mitra.
However, Bengal got off to a poor start as V Malik sent back Sudip Gharami in the first over while SS Haider followed up with the wicket of Ankur Paul with the side on 45 for two.
Malik dealt a double blow after 40 runs to leave Bengal reeling at 85 for four. However, Saurabh, who had come to the crease in the first over, dug in to shape the reply. Even as wickets fell, he batted patiently to keep the innings afloat. He found an able ally in No 8 bat, Seth. Coming together at 180 for six, the pair played diligently to stitch a 182-run stand to help their team size the momentum. Their partnership helped Bengal surpass Delhi’s first innings total and claim a lead. They had taken the team to 362 when Haider sent back the lower-order batsman nine runs short of a well-deserved century. After 16 runs, Simarjeet Singh accounted for the top-order bat four runs short of a deserving double-ton. Malik and Harsh Tyagi then wrapped up the innings for 390 on the last day of the game.
Delhi were 60 for four in their second innings when play was called off on a draw on the last day.
Brief scores: Delhi 1st inn 314/1 0 in 137.1 overs (A Rawat 77, A Pandey 4/92, R Mitra 3/65); Bengal 1st inn 393/10 in 177.1 overs ( S Singh 196, K Seth 91, V Malik 4/94); Delhi 2nd inn 60/4 in 19 overs (A Kaushik 18*, A Pandey 3/26) Match Drawn. Bengal took first innings lead