India Blue lift Challenger Trophy
India Blue won the N.K.P. Salve Challenger Trophy defeating Delhi by 50 runs in the final at the Holkar Cricket Stadium here Sunday.
Electing to bat first, the Yuvraj Singh-led side posted a total of 274 for nine in their 50 overs before bowling out the strong Delhi batting line-up for 224 in 44.4 overs.
An overall solid batting display by India Blue led them to put up a decent target of 275 guided by Manish Pandey's knock of 62 off 78 balls which included six boundaries and a six. The other batsman chipped in to support Pandey.
After the loss of the middle order, Ankit Bawne (35) and southpaw Piyush Chawla (42) took India Blue to a 250-par score.
Delhi pacers Parvinder Awana and all-rounder Rajat Bhatia clinched four wickets each and regularly took wickets to keep the pressure on.
In response, the strong batting line-up of Delhi tottered at the start, losing four wickets by the 10th over with the score at 46. Gautam Gambhir (4), Unmukt Chand (6) and Virender Sehwag (5) all perished cheaply while skipper Virat Kohli looked confident before being run out at 23.
Thereafter, Milind Kumar (54) and wicketkeeper batsman Puneet Bisht (54 not out) tried to stabilise the innings but it was a little too late as they kept running out of partners before being bowled out in the 45th over.
Man of the match Bhuvneshwar Kumar (4/39), Vinay Kumar (3/64) and leg spinner Piyush Chawla (2/45) rattled the Delhi batting order to help their side lift the 2013-14 edition of the Challenger Trophy.
(Posted on 29-09-2013)