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October 22, 2011
A headlining spell from Love Ablish helped Punjab to their third successive win in the Syed Mushtaq Ali competition, in the process handing Delhi their first defeat at the Bansi Lal Cricket Stadium, Rohtak. Delhi's decision to bat came unstuck against Ablish who blitzed the top order, before coming back to mop up the tail and finish with dream figures of 4-2-6-5. Three of Delhi's top five were dismissed for ducks, and if not for Mithun Manhas' 25 and Puneet Mehra's 35, they would have been bowled out in under 20 overs. The target of 86 posed Punjab with few problems, and they got home in the 17th over for the loss of four wickets.
Narender Kumar and Ansuhl Gupta carried Services to an unlikely four-wicket victory over Himachal Pradesh with one ball to spare at the Bansi Lal Cricket Stadium in Rohtak. Chasing 122, Services had slumped to 63 for 6 in the 13th over, leaving them needing almost 9 runs an over with just four wickets in hand. Gupta had been batting patiently while wickets fell around him and found in Kumar a surprising, attacking ally. The No.8 hit his way to 35 not out, his highest score in Twenty20 cricket, from 22 balls, striking two fours and two sixes, to pick up the four points and take them into second place in the points table. Gupta top scored with 39 from a much more sedate 49 balls. Himachal Pradesh's total had been built around opener Hemant Dogra, who made 32, and Rishi Dhawan, who made 31.
Jammu & Kashmir succumbed to their third defeat in as many games, after cobbling up a sorry 66 for 8 in 20 overs against Haryana at Delhi Public School, Rohtak. Joginder Sharma, Harshal Patel and Kuldeep Hooda finished with combined figures of 6 for 31 off 12 overs to wreck the top order, while Sachin Rana chipped in with two wickets in one over. Haryana lost two early wickets in the chase, but Rahul Dewan and Rana finished the game with 4.1 overs to spare.
Half-centuries from Ambati Rayudu and Kedad Devdhar at the Khandheri Cricket Stadium in Rajkot helped Baroda consign Gujarat to their third loss in as many games, and move to the top of the West Zone table. After being inserted, Baroda were rocked early by the loss of Pinal Shah with no run on the board, but Rayudu and Devdhar counterpunched with a 109-run stand off 64 balls. Rayudu departed after striking four sixes and three fours in his 58, and Yusuf Pathan ensured his dismissal did not affect the scoring, as he ran up 39 off 32 balls to help Baroda to 177 for 4. Gujarat's chase was off to a strong start courtesy IPL find Asad Pathan (53 off 29 balls) before Baroda came back with regular wickets. The Pathan brothers, Irfan and Yusuf, were the most stifling of Baroda's bowlers (combined figures of 3 for 49 off eight overs) as Gujarat finished 18 runs short.
Shushant Marathe bludgeoned his way to an unbeaten 90 to lead Mumbai past Saurashtra at the Khandheri Cricket Stadium in Rajkot. Saurashtra chose to bat and some aggressive hitting from Pratik Mehta, whose 38 included two fours and three sixes and came from just 19 balls, and captain Jaydev Shah, who made 36 from 22, helped them post a competitive total of 151 for 5. Mumbai captain Wasim Jaffer was caught behind in the second over, but Marathe was unfazed and rattled along in the company of India batsman Rohit Sharma (32) as the pair added 86 together. A couple of quick wickets after Rohit's departure proved to be nothing more than a brief blip as Marathe ensured Mumbai picked up their first win in their second game.
An abject batting performance from Tripura resulted in a loss to Assam by 45 runs at the Keenan Stadium in Jamshedpur in a match shortened to 13 overs a side. Tripura chose to bowl first and had Assam struggling at 35 for 3 but Amit Sinha's 48 from 33 balls, a remarkable effort given that only two batsmen reached double figures, lifted Assam to 101 for 8. Tripura stumbled right out of the gate and were quickly reduced to 23 for 5 in the sixth over. Captain Rajib Saha (17) managed to reach double figures, but nine batsmen scored less than five runs as Tripura laboured to 46 for 9 in their 13 overs. Rajagopal Satish picked up 3 for 12 for Assam, while Dhiraj Goswami took 2 for 7.
Bengal and Jharkhand shared points after their fixture at the Keenan Stadium was washed out without a ball being bowled.
Captain Mohnish Mishra and fast bowler Amarjeet Singh combined to give Madhya Pradesh a 35-run victory over Vidarbha at the Holkar Cricket Stadium in Indore. MP chose to bat and Mishra led from the front, top scoring with 49 from 32 balls, and adding 58 with fellow opener Naman Ohja in 5.5 overs. Rameez Khan's 32 in the middle order helped MP to 148 for 5. Vidarbha got off to a poor start, losing three wickets with only 21 on the board, but 59-run fourth wicket partnership between former India batsman Hemang Badani and Apoorv Wankhade appeared to give them the upper hand. However, when Amarjeet had Badani caught for 35, that triggered a collapse and Vidarbha lost their last seven wickets for 33 runs. Amarjeet picked up three more wickets to finish with figures of 4 for 21.
Railways coasted to a seven-wicket win over Uttar Pradesh at the Holkar Cricket Stadium in Indore. Railways chose to field and it took a 66-run sixth wicket stand between Parvinder Singh (41) and Arish Alam (33) to lift UP to 113 all out, as only one other batsmen reached double figures. Railways were always in control of the chase, with opener Mahesh Rawat making an unbeaten 50 to see his side home.
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