On a thrilling final day Railways, led by Sanjay Bangar's six-wicket haul, fought valiantly but Gujarat hung on for a one-wicket win to become the Ranji Trophy Plate League champions.
After a see-saw battle over the last four days, Gujarat required 150 to win in the fourth innings and had started the final day at 30 for 0, eyeing an easy win. Bangar, though, made it clear it wouldn't be an easy ride, as he struck twice in the fourth over of the morning, the second one being the big wicket of Parthiv Patel. Four overs later, Bangar removed Rajesh Tabiar, the other opener, and the game was on.
Mohnish Parmar took the aggressive route and scored a 36-ball 41 which would prove crucial in the final equation. He stayed at the wicket for 11.3 overs, during which Gujarat scored 73 runs. By the time Parmar was dismissed, they were well placed at 124 for 5. But Murali Kartik, the Railways captain, removed Hem Joshipura soon and Bangar took over from there. Runs were hard to come by and when Bangar got Timil Patel, the seventh wicket of the innings, just before lunch, Gujarat needed 19 more.
Jay Desai, in his third match, and Ashraf Makda, the left-arm medium-pacer, brought the target down to single figures, but Bangar got Makda and Amit Singh off consecutive deliveries. Desai and Siddarth Trivedi then held their nerve for 28 deliveries and took Gujarat to victory.