Aparajith ton books South Zone semifinal spot
South Zone 284 for 5 (Aparajith 121) beat East Zone 273 for 7 (Saha 77, Jaggi 55, Mithun 3-40) by 11 runs
A maiden List A century from B Aparajith led South Zone to victory over East Zone by 11 runs in the Deodhar Trophy quarterfinal in Guwahati. Through this win they advanced to the semifinal against West Zone, to be played on March 12.
National selectors Sandeep Patil and Roger Binny were in attendance, as South Zone chose to bat. They started poorly, with KL Rahul being dismissed for a golden duck, after his attempted flick carried to wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha down the leg side. Opener Robin Uthappa and Aparajith revived the innings with a solid stand, before Uthappa was forced to retire hurt when he began suffering cramps, and could no longer walk. He was helped off the field by the team's physio. Contributions from Dinesh Karthik (33) and Sachin Baby (33) helped push South Zone's total to 284 for 5. Aparajith finished with 121 off 129 balls.
Abhimanyu Mithun picked up the first East Zone wicket - that of Pallavkumar Das - with the score on 21. Ishank Jaggi came in next and combined with opener Sibsankar Roy to put on 56 for the second wicket. Saha struck a fluent 77, and along with Jaggi, who finished with 55, provided sizeable contributions. Mithun, along with some important run-outs, helped keep East Zone in check, as the required run-rate continued to climb. Gokul Sharma struck an unbeaten 40, and despite some late fireworks from Abu Nechim, East Zone fell short of the target by 11 runs. Mithun was the pick of the bowlers with 3 for 40.