DHARAMSHALA: Hemang Badani stood firm in the face of a spirited defence by Assam and steered Tamil Nadu into the quarterfinals with a four-wicket win in the all-India inter-State one-day cricket tournament at the HPCA Stadium here on Friday.
Badani remained unbeaten on 48 after two comical run outs had Tamil Nadu in a spot of bother chasing a modest target of 128. Tamil Nadu will play Uttar Pradesh in Delhi on Tuesday for a place in the semifinals.
Having restricted Assam to 127 in 43.4 overs after D. Tamil Kumaran and V. Yomahesh struck early blows to destabilize the top order, Tamil Nadu had the match in firm grip. Openers N. Einstien and N. Vijay fell early to the new ball bowler Abunesim Ahmad leaving Tamil Nadu at 19 for two in the ninth over. R. Parsanna (20) and S. Badrinath (11) added 22 runs for the third wicket before Parag Dass ran out Badrinath off his own bowling.
Badani joined Parsanna and held one end up. With wickets falling at regular intervals, Assam was always in the game. But Badani rose to the occasion and guided Tamil Nadu home.
Bengal takes on Karnataka in the second pre-quarterfinals here on Saturday.
The scores: Assam: S. Bhagwati c Parsanna b Kumaran 2, P. Dass c Gopinath b Yomahesh 0, Z. Zakaria c Vasudev b Naresh 30, P. Aziz c Parsanna b Kumaran 2, A. Kumar b Ganapathy 8, N. Bordoloi c Vijay b Ganapathy 0, G. Sarmah b Kumaran 29, A. Katle c Gopinath b Naresh 0, A. Konwar (not out) 8, A. Ahmad lbw b Badani 18, S. Tarafdar b Yomahesh 11; Extras (lb-2, w-16, nb-1) 19; Total (in 43.4 overs) 127.
Fall of wickets: 1-1, 2-6, 3-13, 4-30, 5-33, 6-70, 7-75, 8-100, 9-120.
Tamil Nadu bowling: Yomahesh 9.4-0-33-2, Kumaran 10-4-20-3, Ganapathy 8-1-26-2, Naresh 8-1-26-2, Einstein 6-0-14-0, Badani 2-0-6-1.
Tamil Nadu: N. Einstien lbw b Ahmad 1, N. Vijay c Zakaria b Ahmad 9, R. Parsanna c Zakaria b Dass 20, S. Badrinath (run out) 11, H. Badani (not out) 48, K. Shri Vasudev lbw b Konwar 11, K. Gopinath (run out) 1, V. Yomahesh (not out) 4; Extras (b-5, lb-5, w-10, nb-3) 23; Total (for six wkts. in 39.5 overs) 128.
Fall of wickets: 1-7, 2-19, 3-41, 4-78, 5-94, 6-102.
Assam bowling: Ahmad 9.5-2-30-2, Tarafdar 9-2-19-0, Dass 8-1-22-1, Konwar 8-0-31-1, Katle 3-0-12-0, Bhagwati 2-0-4-0.