Assam reach first Vijay Hazare final
Assam 200 for 5 (Sharma 52*, Tarjinder 49) beat Kerala 197 (Jagadeesh 89, Gomez 51) by five wickets
An all-round effort from Gokul Sharma helped Assam reach their first final of the Vijay Hazare Trophy, as they beat Kerala by five wickets in Visakhapatnam. They will play Delhi, who won their semi-final against Bengal, in the final on Sunday.
Sharma took three middle-order wickets and scored an unbeaten half-century to steer Assam's chase of 198. Tarjinder Singh, who scored a crucial 49, and seamer Pritam Das, who took three wickets, were the other main contributors to the landmark win.
Kerala's innings was built on two productive partnerships, 79 between VA Jagadeesh and Rohan Prem, and 72 for the sixth wicket between Jagadeesh and Gomez. Jagadeesh eventually scored 89, and Gomez scored a half-century, but for the most part, Assam's bowlers kept chipping away at Kerala. After Sharma created the opening by taking early wickets, Das helped wrap up the tail. Seven batsmen scored in single digits.
In reply, Assam were in early trouble, having been reduced to 28 for 3 in the eighth over by seamers Prasanth Parameswaran and Sandeep Warrier. But opener Pallavkumar Das and Tarjinder Singh steadied the innings with a 72-run stand. Sharma, with an unbeaten 52, and Jamaluddin Syed Mohammad, who scored an unbeaten 29, took Assam home in 46 overs. Sreesanth proved expensive for Kerala, as he gave away 56 runs in nine wicketless overs.
Delhi 160 for 4 (Gambhir 69) beat Bengal 156 (Tiwary 87, Sood 3-48) by six wickets
Delhi beat Bengal by six wickets to advance to the final of the Vijay Hazare Trophy in the other semi-final.
Bengal were put into bat and were in trouble, as seamers Sumit Narwal, Parvinder Awana and Pradeep Sangwan made early inroads to leave them struggling at 32 for 4. Manoj Tiwary and Laxmi Shukla attempted to stabilise the innings, putting on a 73-run stand for the fifth wicket. However, once Shukla was dismissed, Bengal were only able to add a further 51 runs as Delhi wrapped up the tail, to bowl them out in he 41st over. Tiwary top-scored with 87, while Delhi's Varun Sood picked up 3 for 48.
Despite losing opener Dhruv Shorey with the score at 16, Delhi strung together regular partnerships. Gautam Gambhir top-scored with 69 as he guided Delhi towards the 157-run target, and got the support of Unmukt Chand (22) and Rajat Bhatia (28).