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September 2, 2009
India Revenue had to stage two fightbacks before prevailing over Indian Tobacco Company (ITC) by six runs in Mohali and knocking them out of the BCCI Corporate Trophy. After choosing to bat, Indian Revenue's top order caved in meekly, leaving them tottering at 53 for 4 in the 16th over. Bengal's Avik Chowdhury, coming in at No. 4, rescued them with a patient, unbeaten 110. He was initially helped in the recovery by Amitabh Velaskar, who made a brisk 41 and added 86 for the fifth wicket. Still, Indian Revenue slid to 185 for 7 after 40.1 overs, and required a quick 63-run stand between Chowdhury and Ankit Sharma to post a competitive total of 255.
ITC got solid contributions from their top-order batsmen and coasted to 101 for 2 by the 24th over. Left-arm spinner Ajinkya Joshi's triple-strike, though, reduced them to 138 for 4. A 84-run fifth-wicket association between Parvinder Singh (51) and Bipul Sharma (42) left ITC the straightforward task of making 34 off 32 balls with six wickets remaining. Chowdhury, though, again saved India Revenue, providing the breakthrough by removing Bipul. Medium-pacer Love Ablish struck twice in the next over, blows from which ITC couldn't recover. ITC's match against Air India Blue was washed out on Tuesday, which means they finish their league matches with two points, and no chance of making the final four.
In Visakhapatanam, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation's (ONGC) strong batting line-up powered them to 329 and a comfortable 71-run victory over Madras Rubber Factory (MRF). After the openers had provided a cracking start, ONGC's middle-order consolidated the advantage. No. 4 Gagan Khoda made a quick century, and was involved in big stands with Gautam Gambhir for the third wicket and Virat Kohli for the fourth. While Gambhir made a breezy 54 that contained only four fours, Kohli favoured the big hits, slamming six sixes in addition to four fours. At 282 for 3 in the 43rd over, with Kolhi and Khoda still at the crease, ONGC were only kept down to 329 due to a double-strike from 18-year-old medium-pacer Vikram Dahiya. Another 18-year-old, PK Dharma, took five wickets, but his eight overs were clobbered for 75 runs.
The MRF chase got off to a slow start, with opener S Thilak taking 43 balls for his 21 runs. When one of their key batsmen, Venugopal Rao, was dismissed in the 20th over, the score was 80 for 3 and MRF's hopes were almost extinguished. However, they fought on with the help of a century from veteran S Sriram and Gnaneswara Rao's 54. The pair took MRF along to 187 for 3 in the 37th over, but 330 proved too stiff a target against the likes of Ishant Sharma, Munaf Patel and Praveen Kumar. After Gnaneswara's exit, there was little support for Sriram and MRF meandered to 258 for 9 in their 50 overs.
Click here for Cricinfo's report of the Group C match between India Cements and Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited in Bangalore.
The Group D match between All India Public Sector Sports Promotion Board and Indian Oil Corporation in Dharamsala was abandoned without a ball being bowled due to incessant rain.
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