Indore (Madhya Pradesh) : On a day of remarkable power-hitting in Vijay Hazare Trophy 50-over domestic tournament, Kolkata Knight Riders' new-recruit Venkatesh Iyer made the most of solid batting at Holkar Stadium for Madhya Pradesh against Punjab in the Vijay Hazare trophy group B’ last league match played here on Sunday.
Madhya Pradesh, which won the toss and opted to bat, got off to a fine start with Iyer and Abhishek Bhandari taking the Punjab attack to shreds. Iyer was in some big-hitting mood as he continued to put pressure on Punjab bowlers even after the departure of Bhandari. Iyer stitched a 144-run stand for the 2nd wicket with Rajat Patidar (54) and Aditya Shrivastava (88) before he was run out for 198.
Iyer hit as many as 7 sixes and 20 boundaries as he took the likes of Sandeep Sharma, Siddharth Kaul, Barinder Sran, Mayank Markande and Gurkeerat Mann to the cleaners. The left-hander needed just 146 balls for his 198 before Kaul ran him out.This is Iyer's highest List A score as he went past his previous best of 109 not out. Iyer's blitzkrieg helped Madhya Pradesh 402 for 3. In reply, Punjab managed to score 297 runs in 42.3 overs and lost the match by 105 runs. For MP, Mihir Hirwani striked agains and took 4 wickets.
Brief Scores: Madhya Pradesh 402 for 3 in 50 overs (Venkatesh Iyer 198, Aditya Shrivastava 88 not out, Rajat Patidar 54) Punjab 297 all out in 42.3 overs (Abhishek Sharma 104, Siddharth Kaul 33; Mihir Hirwani 4/62)
Andhra beat Jharkhand to finish Group B leaders
Andhra outplayed Jharkhand by seven wickets to emerge on top of Group B. Andhra, Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand and Madhya Pradesh finished on 12 points each from five matches but Andhra emerged on top, thanks to their higher net run-rate and secured a place in the knockout phase.Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh finished second, third and fourth respectively, followed by Punjab (8 points) and Vidarbha (4).Sent in to bat, Jharkhand struggled with only four batsmen managing double figures. Skipper Ishan Kishan made 38 (68 balls, 3 fours), the highest score while medium-pacer M Harishankar Reddy was impressive with a four-wicket haul for Andhra.
Ashwin Hebbar (44, 18 balls, 4X4s, 4X6s) and Ricky Bhui (57 not out, 27 balls, 5X4s, 4X6s) went on the attack from the start with the Jharkhand bowlers having no respite.The duo added 82 in 5.5 overs before Hebbar fell to Shahbaz Nadeem (1/26). Bhui continued with his aggressive ways and despite losing captain Hanuma Vihari (4), he saw the team home in the company of Naren Reddy (16 not out, 7 balls, 1X4, 2X6s).
Brief Scores: Jharkhand 139 all out in 46.2 overs (Ishan Kishan 38, Anukul Roy 30; M Harishankar Reddy 4/30) lost to Andhra 140 for 3 in 9.5 overs (Ashwin Hebbar 44, Ricky Bhui 57 not out) by seven wickets. Andhra: 4 points, Jharkhand: 0.