Cricket

Tamil Nadu finishes on top of Group-C

There she goes... M. Vijay top-scored for Tamil Nadu though he was unlucky to miss out on a well-deserved century.

There she goes... M. Vijay top-scored for Tamil Nadu though he was unlucky to miss out on a well-deserved century.  

Tamil Nadu may have scored less than what it wanted to, but that was more than enough for its bowlers, who came up with another clinical performance

Sometimes you play so well, even the law of averages is helpless.

This Tamil Nadu side is going through such a phase. It scored its ninth successive win to finish its campaign with a 100% record in Group C of the Vijaya Hazare Trophy tournament; its latest victim was Gujarat.

Parthiv Patel’s men had also come into this match winning all their eight matches, but were soundly beaten, by 78 runs, in front of a small but enthusiastic crowd at the Gujarati Vidyalaya ground on Wednesday.

Tamil Nadu was ruthless on the field, yet again. It made 274 for nine after being put in.

Great start

Given the great start provided by openers Abhinav Mukund (79, 68b, 13x4) and M. Vijay (94, 106b, 8x4, 2x6), it looked like Tamil Nadu would post a score in excess of 300.

The first wicket stand was worth 130 in as many balls when Abhinav was smartly stumped by Parthiv off Piyush Chawla.

Vijay, who played some delectable drives, was now joined by Washington Sundar (42, 65b).

Slump

The duo added 82 for the second wicket, but the Tamil Nadu innings floundered after that. From 212 for one, it slumped to 225 for four within a space of four overs.

One of those wickets was that of Karthik — run out going for a sharp run that probably wasn’t there — much to the disappointment of his fans, who had been chanting “DK” all day and were expecting fireworks from him once more.

Tamil Nadu may have scored less than what it wanted to, but that was more than enough for its bowlers, who came up with another clinical performance.

Mohammed impressive

Seamer M. Mohammed was the most successful bowler, taking three for 20 from his five overs. He ensured that Tamil Nadu did not miss K. Vignesh, its leading wicket-taker in the competition.

The Gujarat chase had begun on the wrong foot with Parthiv getting out to the eighth ball of the innings.

His decision to deposit left-arm spinner R. Sai Kishore in the stands beyond the long-on boundary didn’t prove wise, with Washington taking a fine catch.

Bhargar Merai (44, 52b) and Axar Patel (55, 55b) batted well, but that wasn’t enough to pose a serious threat. Both the teams now head to Bengaluru for the quarterfinals starting on October 20.

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Printable version | Jul 14, 2020 7:18:49 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/ruthless-tamil-nadu-on-cloud-nine/article29723139.ece

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