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The Hindu
The Hindu
N. Sudarshan

Vijay Hazare Trophy 2023 | Tripura stuns Saurashtra with fifties from Das, Chatterjee, Satish and Joydeb’s five-for

 Unfancied Tripura stunned defending champion Saurashtra by 148 runs in the Vijay Hazare Trophy at the Alur Cricket Stadium here on Monday.

On a wicket that was no feather-bed, Tripura scored a competitive 258, with half-centuries from Bikram Kumar Das (59, 76b, 4x4), and the seasoned duo of Sudip Chatterjee (61, 93b, 2x4) and Ganesh Satish (71, 74b, 5x4).

A nearly full-strength Saurashtra, despite having in its midst star batter Cheteshwar Pujara, did not display similar collective spirit and was bundled out for a paltry 110.

The experienced Tripura pacer Manisankar Murasingh struck the first two blows — Harvik Desai was snapped up in the cordon and Chirag Jani saw his stumps rearranged. Rana Datta lured Sheldon Jackson into a lunging drive and had him caught at gully to leave Saurashtra reeling at 13 for three.

Pujara (24, 32b) and Arpit Vasavada (16, 30b) resisted for a while, but pacers Bikramjit Debnath and Abhijit Sarkar triggered another collapse, dismissing Pujara leg-before and castling Vasavada respectively.

Tweaker Joydeb Deb, playing only his second List-A match, ran through the Saurashtra middle and lower-orders, picking up a fifer (five for 15) over one uninterrupted spell of 6.4 overs.

Vishvarajsinh Jadeja, Dharmendrasinh Jadeja and Jaydev Unadkat were trapped in front by the 18-year-old, with all three guilty of exhibiting little to no footwork.

Prerak Mankad (21, 43b) was caught at short mid-wicket, and the curtain dropped when Debnath completed a splendid catch running from long-on to send back Parth Bhut (21, 27b).

“It’s a different feeling when you beat a champion team,” said Wriddhiman Saha, Tripura skipper and one of India’s best wicketkeepers.

“We lost the toss but still batted well. Bowlers were very disciplined and we believe that any team will find it tough to score against us if we bowl to our strengths. And we kept up the pressure throughout.”

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