Vijay Hazare Trophy: Faiz Fazal doubtful starter against Delhi
NAGPUR: Last time Vidarbha and Delhi met in a List 'A' match, Faiz Fazal's gritty 83 was the difference between the two sides.
In gloomy conditions during Delhi winter, Faiz held the innings together with a composed knock against the likes of Ishant Sharma, Navdeep Saini, Pradeep Sangwan and Pawan Negi as Vidarbha recorded a fighting 18-run victory.
Faiz, however, might not feature in the playing eleven when the two sides meet in their opening match of Vijay Hazare One-day Tournament at Darshanam Sports and Education Academy in Vadodara on Tuesday.
Faiz had sustained an injury on his left hand little finger, which is now completely healed. While he cleared the fitness test, Vidarbha team management is unlikely to rush him. "We don't want to take chances with Faiz. We have a long season ahead. Faiz is with the team so that his rehabilitation can be taken care of. He is not only Vidarbha's premier batsman but also the leader," a VCA source told TOI.
Vidarbha didn't have a great run in the One-day format in the last couple of years. They would like to turn it around. A star-studded Delhi will test them. India wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant would be eying return to form after two average series against West Indies and South Africa.
Youngster Navdeep Saini - who is impressing everyone with each outing - would be key to his team's fortunes along with left-arm pacer Kulwant Khejroliya. With the likes of Nitish Rana, Pawan Negi, Himmat Singh and former India Under-19 captain Anuj Rawat Delhi looks a formidable side under Dhruv Shorey, who has come a long way in the last two season.
Vidarbha, on the other hand, have some useful shorter format players. The likes of Akshay Karnewar, Jitesh Sharma, Apoorv Wankhade, Rishabh Rathod and Atharva Taide have proved time and again what they are capable of.
The presence of Umesh Yadav will boost the Vidarbha bowling line-up which has young pacers like Darshan Nalkande and Yash Thakur. Vidarbha also have two quality spinners in Akshay Wakhare and Aditya Sarwate.
All in all, a good contest on cards if rains don't play spoilsport. It has been raining continuously in Vadodara in the past three-four days. Both teams would be hoping for some action as they didn't have a single practice session.
Vidarbha: Wasim Jaffer (Captain), Faiz Fazal, R Sanjay, Atharva Taide, Ganesh Satish, Rushabh Rathod, Apoorva Wankhade, Jitesh Sharma (wicketkeeper), Akshay Wadkar (wicketkeeper), Akshay Wakhare, Akshay Karnewar, Aditya Sarvate, Umesh Yadav, Yash Thakur, Darshan Nalkande, Shrikant Wagh. Coach: Chandrakant Pandit.
Delhi: Dhruv Shorey (captain), Rishabh Pant, (wicketkeeper), Anuj Rawat (wicketkeeper), Subodh Bhati, Kunwar Bidhuri, Kunal Chandela, Hiten Dalal, Himmat Singh, Kulwant Khejroliya, Manan Sharma, Pawan Negi, Nitish Rana, Navdeep Saini, Tejas Baroka, Vikas Tokas, Lalit Yadav. Coach: Bhaskar Pillay.