Paliwal ton helps North drub South

Riding on the back of a superb unbeaten century from Rajat Paliwal (107, 113b, 8x4, 2x6), North Zone registered a facile 100-run victory over South Zone in the first semifinal of the Deodhar Trophy here at the YS Rajasekhara Reddy Stadium on Monday.

After North Zone scored a competitive 265/7 in their 50 overs, the South Zone batsmen couldn’t come to grips as they lost wickets at regular intervals before folding up for 165 in just 36.3 overs. Harbhajan Singh (3/35) and Parvez Rasool (3/15) were the main wicket-takers for North.
 South took the initiative early on after reducing North to 4/63 but Paliwal and Gurkeerat Singh (77, 66b, 6x4, 4x6) took the game away from them with a counter-attacking partnership that was worth 151 runs. They were severe on both the frontline spinners -- Pragyan Ojha went for 75 in his 12 overs, while Baba Aparajith went for 34 in his five overs -- as they dragged the match back in their favour.

Chasing the total, Robin Uthappa and Aparajith put on 72 for the first wicket but there was little resistance once Ishant Sharma snared the latter. Only Karun Nair’s (51 n.o., 57b, 5x4, 2x6) late hitting kept the contest alive but it was too little too late.

Score boardNORTH ZONE: Prashant Chopra lbw Aparajith 34; Gautam Gambhir c Ojha b Vinay 2; Nitin Saini c Samson b Vinay 16; Mandeep Singh (run out) 0; Rajat Paliwal (not out) 107; Gurkeerat Singh lbw Vinay 77; Parvez Rasool c Vinay b Mithun 8; Harbhajan c Vinay b Ojha 7; Rishi Dhawan (not out) 4; Extras (B-4, W-5, NB-1) 10; Total (7 wickets; 50 overs) 265. Fall of wickets: 1-9, 2-35, 3-40, 4-63, 5-214, 6-243, 7-252.

Bowling: R Vinay Kumar 10-0-57-3, A Mithun 10-1-37-1, VY Mahesh 9-1-36-0, Robin Uthappa 1-0-6-0, Pragyan Ojha 12-0-75-1, Baba Aparajith 5-0-34-1, Karun Nair 1-0-3-0, Manish Pandey 2-0-13-0.

SOUTH ZONE: Robin Uthappa c Gurkeerat b Dhawan 47, Baba Aparajith c Chopra b Ishant 21, KL Rahul c Saini b Dhawan 3, Dinesh Karthik c Chopra b Rasool 10, Manish Pandey c Mandeep b Harbhajan 7, Karun Nair (n.o) 51, Sanju Samson c Chopra b Harbhajan 0, R Vinay Kumar c Harbhajan b Rasool 3, Abhimanyu Mithun c Gurkeerat b Harbhajan 4, Yo Mahesh c Saini b Nehra 7, Pragyan Ojha c Nehra b Rasool 0. Extras (B-4, W-8) 12; Total (all out; 36.3 overs) 165.

Fall of wickets: 1-72, 272, 3-78, 4-89, 5-106, 6-107, 7-110, 8-121, 9-148. Bowling: Ashish Nehra 7-0-24-1, Rishi Dhawan 9-1-47-2, Ishant Sharma 6-1-40-1, Harbhajan Singh 10-0-35-3, Parvez Rasool 4.3-1-15-3. 

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