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Report: Mum vs Sau, T20 West Zone, 2014

Mumbai claim 16-run win over Saurashtra

Mumbai posted a 16-run win against Saurashtra in the West Zone clash of the BCCI T20 League. A 46-run opening stand and unbroken blistering 46-run partnership between Sarfaraz Khan and Sujit Nayak helped Mumbai to 145 for five. A late onslaught by the batsmen to collect 39 runs from the last two overs helped Mumbai’s cause. Cheteshwar Pujara then made 62 off 60 balls during Saurashtra’s run chase. The match was kept hanging in balance by the Saurashtra batsmen, but Zaheer Khan’s double-blow in the penultimate tipped the match in Mumbai’s favour.

Earlier, Tare got Mumbai off to a good start after being inserted to bat first at BKC Ground. The in-form Mumbai opener smashed the ball all over the ground, while Shushant Marathe played a more circumspect knock. The easy flow of runs was eventually stemmed by Arpit Vasavda. The left-arm spinner kept a tight leash on the batsmen and claimed the first four wickets. In his first over, he gave his team the crucial wicket of Tare. He halted the Mumbai opener by having him stumped for 29. After Tare’s departure, Marathe decided to take on the bowlers. He slammed Kamlesh Makwana twice to the boundary to take the team past 50 thereafter. However, Vasavda had him stumped as well in the following over to leave Mumbai on 55 for two. And two balls later, he knocked back Suryakumar Yadav’s stumps.

Abhishek Nayar was then joined in the middle by Shreyas Iyer. But 14 runs later, Vasvada struck again to send back the middle-order batsman. Iyer was caught by Prithivpal Solanki at long-on. Vasavada finished with figures of 4-0-19-4.

Sarfaraz Khan then made his way to the middle with the team on 71 for four in the 14th over. Nayar’s woodwork was then disrupted by Unadkat for 24, at a critical time when Mumbai needed to accelerate.

However, with Vasavda’s quota of overs finished and Mumbai trying to set a challenging total, Sarfaraz and Sujit Nayak clobbered the Saurashtra attack. In the penultimate over, Nayak hit Bhat for a six near the sightscreen followed by a boundary. He then smashed the bowler over long-on for six more. He added four more to collect 22 runs from that over. They continued the blitzkrieg as Sarfaraz struck Unadkat over mid-wicket for six. The pair added 17 more in the last over. Sarfaraz was unbeaten on 36, while Nayak had smashed 23 off seven balls.

Defending the total, Dhawal Kulkarni made the first dent in the Saurashtra line-up by sending back Sagar Jogiyani. With 15 runs on the board, Sheldon Jackson joined forces with Cheteshwar Pujara. Halfway through the innings, Saurashtra had grafted 39 runs. But the pair soon broke the shackles and increased the run-rate. Pujara smashed Nayak over the fence to add six in the 11th over and Jackson smashed a boundary as they added 12 runs in the over and took their team past the 50-run mark. Runs came in more freely for Saurashtra as the pair looked to close in on the target. But Dake provided Mumbai a breakthrough by accounting for Jackson’s wicket.

The Saurashtra captain then walked out to the middle with the team on 72 for two. Jaydev Shah smashed Tambe over deep mid-wicket for six as he tried to take on the bowling attack. The batsmen had their task cut out for them as Saurashtra needed 64 off the last five overs.

With the match precariously poised, the Mumbai skipper brought himself back into the attack in the 17th over. Pujara reached his 50 with a four off Zaheer. Thanks to some bit hitting, Saurashtra were on 107 at the end of 17 overs.

However, Dake bowled Shah off the very next delivery, and later in the over, Kuldeep Raval was caught by Suryakumar at long-on. At 109 for four, Solanki came out to the middle. And the second last over, Zaheer dealt a double-blow to leave Saurashtra on 114 for six; a brilliant catch by Sarfaraz sent back Pujara, while Solanki was castled.

Facing the improbable task of scoring 30 runs off the last over, Saurashtra lost the match to Mumbai and are yet to open their account in the points table. 

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Report: Ind vs WI (Women), WT20 2014

Raj, Raut lead India to thumping victory

India openers Mithali Raj and Punam Raut took India to a nine-wicket win over West Indies at the Sylhet Stadium. Both openers scored half-centuries as India cantered to victory after their bowlers restricted West Indies Women to 117.

Chasing 118, Raj and Raut got the team off to a flying start. Kaur set the tone of the innings with a boundary off Shanel Daley in the first over. The pair milked the West Indies bowlers as they cruised towards the target. Both reached their half-centuries as they leveled scorers with WI. Their partnership was worth 117 when S Selman claimed Raut to deny India a 10-wicket victory. Earlier in the over, Raut had smashed the bowler twice to the boundary and ran twos couple of times to claim 12 runs off it. After the opener had to return for 56, Smriti Mandhana came to the middle and struck Anisa Mohammed for a four in the next over to take the team to victory. Raj remained unbeaten on 55 as India attained the target with 14 balls to spare.

Earlier, Shubhalakshmi Sharma dealt the first blow, after West Indies Women opted to bat first, by trapping Kycia Knight lbw off the first ball of the match. But Deandra Dottin (57 off 51balls) played a vital knock to hold the WI innings together. She stitched together a 61-run partnership with Stafanie Taylor until the captain was removed by Poonam Yadav. 26 runs later, Dottin was sent back by Jhulan Goswami. WI failed to capitalise on the foundation laid by the skipper and Dottin as they managed to add just 25 runs in the last five overs for four wickets. Harmanpreet Kaur claimed two wickets, while Archana Das picked one and Sharma affected a run out as India kept the flow of runs in check and restricted the opposition to 117 for seven.