Vijay Hazare Trophy (2020-21): Rajasthan Vs Pondicherry (Sawai Mansingh Stadium)
Jaipur, 21 Feb’21 (09.00 AM):
Put into bat by Rajasthan, Pondicherry started rather sedately with the score moving at snail’s pace with both the openers playing cautiously to retain wickets initially for an onslaught later. However, with the loss of skipper Rohit for 17 when the score was 29, the other opener Govindarajan also fell with the score just reading 30 for 2 at the end of 12th over. The old warhorse Paras Dogra and Sheldon Jackson once again opened their playing manual to show the youngsters how to build an innings as this pair added 118 runs for the third wicket. Sheldon Jackson scored a valuable 55 off 69 balls with five boundaries and was out in the 37th over when the score reached 148 for 3. The No.5 batsman Sures Kumar continued where Sheldon Jackson left; to give boost to the confidence of Paras Dogra, who was sailing smooth to take on the Rajasthan bowlers.
The class of warhorse
The “never say die” attitude was well displayed by Paras Dogra though the scoring rate was not ample after 40 overs, as he was playing cautiously to take the team to a big score in the company of Sures Kumar, who scored 38 off 32 balls, and in the company of Sagar Trivedi, the going was good and Paras Dogra reached the first century of the season when he was dismissed for 101. Paras Dogra’s innings was punctuated with three sixes and seven boundaries with a healthy scoring rate of 92.66 and his innings has given the required confidence to the team to look forward to the winning moment in the tournament.
Pondicherry finished the quota of 50 overs with the score reading 273 for 6, setting Rajasthan the target of 274 for a win. As the bowlers were struggling to extract any assistance, Rajasthan openers were not ready to take any risk against a good attack, though no threat could be posed, with a partnership of 122 runs before Adithya Gharwal was dismissed for 70 off 62 balls. With good partnership for the second and third wickets, opener M.N.Singh scored 115 off 144 balls with just a couple of hits to fence away for victory. Rajasthan won by six wickets with the score reading 274 for 4 with more than three overs to spare.
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