Rest of India v Railways, Irani Trophy, 4th day October 4, 2005

Railways cruise to nine-wicket win

Cricinfo staff

Murali Kartik's superb allround display helped Railways seal their second Irani title © Getty Images

Railways 311 (Kartik 96, Goud 78*, Powar 7-116) and 50 for 1 beat Rest of India 223 (Jadhav 53) and 137 by 9 wickets

Amit Pagnis, the left-handed opening batsman, led the way with a breezy 35 as Railways romped home to a nine-wicket victory and wrapped up their second Irani Trophy title on the fourth day in Delhi. They needed just 15.2 overs to knock off the 50 required and completed the final rites of a one-sided contest.

Railways had got themselves into a great position on the third day when Murali Kartik and Kulamani Parida, their two spinners, engineered a sensational collapse. Rest of India were cruising along at 98 for 2, with a lead of 10, when they lost the last eight wickets for just 39 and left Railways with a meagre target to chase. Barring Dheeraj Jadhav, none of Rest's batsmen came to terms with the variable bounce of the Karnail Singh Stadium - a fact which the Railways bowlers exploited with skill.

Kartik was the star of the show for Railways with five wickets in the game complementing his plucky 96 in the first innings - one that propped up Railways from a precarious 104 or 6. Yere Goud, the middle-order batsmen who scored a valuable half-century, and Kulamani Parida, the offspinner who ended with seven victims in the match, also made crucial contributions.

The only silver lining for Rest of India was the splendid efforts of Ramesh Powar, the offspinner from Mumbai, who impressed with his seven-wicket haul in the first innings. Powar will get another chance to prove himself in the forthcoming Challenger Series, starting on October 10, but it remains to be seen if his consistent performances in the domestic level can earn him a recall into the national side.