Yuvraj, Chand power North Zone into final
North Zone 160 for 2 (33 overs max) (Yuvraj 77*, Chand 56*) beat Central Zone 190 (45 over max) (Menaria 34, Raina 33, Mishra 3-50) by eight wickets (VJD method)
Yuvraj Singh and Unmukt Chand scored half-centuries as North Zone marched into the Deodhar Trophy final, beating Central Zone by eight wickets in a match affected by bad light and rain in Guwahati.
The match was reduced to 45 overs per side after a rain-delayed start. In the second innings, play was again interrupted by bad light and North Zone were set a revised target of 160 in 33 overs.
Yuvraj and Chand made short work of the chase, taking their side past the total with more than three overs to spare, after Praveen Kumar struck early to dismiss Chandan Madan and captain Gautam Gambhir with the score at 31 for 2.
Yuvraj struck up some kind of form after scoring two ducks in his last two matches against Kerala and Jammu & Kashmir in the Vijay Hazare Trophy. He scored his first runs with a boundary off Ishwar Pandey and continued in the same vein after the interruption, hitting Shrikant Wagh for four fours in the 17th over and bringing up his fifty with a boundary in the 22nd over. His 70-ball 77 included nine fours and three sixes.
Chand, who struck a hundred for Delhi in the Vijay Hazare Trophy final, was cautious early on, but played some attractive shots once he settled down. He was dropped on 28 after wicketkeeper Naman Ojha failed to hold on to a tough chance off Ishwar Pandey in the 19th over.
Earlier, the North Zone bowlers managed to keep Central Zone in check, dismissing them for 190 in 41.5 overs. Parvinder Awana struck early to dismiss opener Amit Paunikar, while the rest of the batting line-up, which included Suresh Raina, Mohammad Kaif and Ashok Menaria, failed to convert their starts into a big innings. Raina fell for a quick 33, while Menaria and Kaif perished trying to boost the run rate. Legspinner Amit Mishra picked up three wickets for 50 runs.
North Zone will play the winner of the South Zone v West Zone semi-final in the title clash of the zonal List-A tournament.