Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy: Punjab trounce Arunachal Pradesh by 10 wickets
CHANDIGARH: Medium pacer Baltej shines with the ball as Punjab trounced Arunachal Pradesh by 10-wickets in an one-sided match to register their first win in the ongoing Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy at the Sector 16 Cricket Stadium, here on Saturday.
After being denied by rain against Maaharastra a day before, this victory helped Mandeep Singh led Punjab to bring their campaign back on the track. It was also Punjab's biggest victory in terms of wickets in the T20 cricket.
Punjab's skipper Mandeep Singh won the toss and opted to field. The match was reduced to eight over per side due to soggy outfield.
Punjab make couple of changes as injured leg-spinner Mayank Markande was not the playing XI. He was replaced by left-arm spinner Karan Kaila, while Baltej Singh came in the place of Krishna.
Batting first, Arunachal Pradesh has a promising start as opener Uvais Ahmad scored two crisp boundaries of Siddharth Kaul's bowling. Mandeep introduced Baltej Singh, who ran through the Arunachal's top order. He first got the wicket of Samarth Seth (1 off 4b) being caught at mid-wicket by Mandeep Singh. Two balls later, Uvais (12 off 11b; 2x4) went for a hoick and was top edged one to Shubman Gill at the point. In hhis next over Baltej got the prized wicket of Abhsihek Sahani (8 off 8b; 1x6).
The inexperience of Arunachal Pradesh Pradesh was quite evident on the pitch. They kept losing wickets at the regular interval of time and most of their batsmen throw their wickets by playing wild hoicks.
For Punjab, Baltej Singh (3/11) was the pick of the bowler as he took three wickets, while Sandeep Sharma (1/6) also chipped in with one wicket.
In reply, Punjab's opners chased down the target in 4 overs without losing much sweat. Shubman Gill (24 not out off 14b; 3x4, 1x6) and Prabhsimran Singh (23 off 11b; 3x4, 1x6) looked in no trouble dueing the chase.
Shubman, who playing his last game of the tournament stamped his authority, while on the other hand Prabhsimran also matched his partner with his aggressive stroke making.
Shubman Gill now join Indian test squad for the upcoming two match series against Bangladesh.
Shubman will be replaced by Amritsar's Rohan Marwaha for the remaining of the tournament. Punjab will lock horns with Chandigarh on Monday at the Sector 16, Cricket Stadium.
Arunachal Pradesh: 44 for 7 in 8 overs (Uvais Ahmad 12; Baltej Singh 3/11, Sandeep Sharma 1/6)
Punjab: 50 for 0 in 4 overs (Shubman Gill 23 not out, Prabhsimran Singh 23 not out)