Surya’s stunning effort not enough as Tigers roar their way to victory

A magnificent opening partnership laid the foundation of a comfortable chase for the Tigers in their debut match.

Suryakumar Yadav’s magnificent 90* in just 56 balls went in vain as a solid opening partnership followed by timely contributions led the Aakash Tigers Mumbai Western Suburbs to victory over defending champions Triumph Knights Mumbai North East in the opening match of T20 Mumbai Season 2.

Fielding first, the new boys Aakash Tigers got an early breakthrough as captain Dhawal Kulkarni’s well directed short bowl caught batsman Shikhar Thakur by surprise; and he ended up hitting it straight into the hands of Shams Mulani who took a spectacular running catch.

In the very next over, debutant Arjun Tendulkar got rid of Karan Sharma’s, as his slog attempt found Aakarshit Gomel on the leg-side boundary, leaving the Triumph Knights two down with just 25 on the board. In the seventh over, a mix-up between skipper Suryakumar Yadav and Sumit Ghadigaonkar resulted in the latter getting run out as the defending champions lost their third wicket with 38 on the scoreboard.

New man Vinayak Bhoir and skipper Yadav rebuilt the Triumph Knights inning, biding their time and putting away any bad deliveries on offer, forging a 41-run partnership to get their team to a better position. The pair looked to up the ante in the 12th over as Yadav smashed the first six of Season 2 with an inside-out shot over long off. However, in the following over Bhoir too joined in on the act but perished just a couple of deliveries later after his pull on the leg-side found Gomel who roped in another good catch in the deep.

Having dismissed Bhoir, bowler Anjdeep Lad picked up his second scalp of the afternoon in his very next over, as the dangerous Aakash Parkar had to walk back after a good catch was taken down the leg from keeper Doraiswamy Subramanian with the scoreboard reading 95-5. Parikshit Valasangkar too had to walk back after scoring just six off six deliveries, as captain Yadav kept losing partners but carried on waging a lone battle for side, completing his 50 in the 18th over.

After a quiet 19th, Yadav went berserk in the final over, smashing four sixes and a boundary as the Triumph Knights finished with 147/6 in their batting effort with the captain himself getting an unbeaten 90.

In reply, the Aakash Tigers were off to a cautious start, scoring at a rate of a-run-a-ball for the first five overs, however, in the final over of the powerplay, openers Gomel and Kaustub Pawar took the attack to pacer Vaibhav Singh, picking up 17 off his over to finish with 47 runs after six overs.

The openers continued their onslaught and picked up 20 off the next two overs, but in the eighth over, spinner Prasad Patil managed to get a much-needed breakthrough for his side, dismissing the dangerous Gomel for 41. Spin did the trick yet again in the 11th over for the Triumph Knights, as Pawar danced down the pitch but missed the ball completed and was out stumped with the scoreboard reading 83-2.

Tendulkar and new batsman Siddharth Akre added 26 runs in 23 deliveries before the former perished after his shot straight down the ground didn’t have enough legs to go past the boundary line, giving Kalpesh Sawant an easy catch opportunity which he gobbled up. In the ensuing over Akre, too, had to depart after his pull attempt on a ball that kept low found a fielder in the deep on the leg side.

A tidy over from Valasangkar that yielded only five runs put the pressure on the Aakash Tigers and it paid off for the Triumph Knights, as Shams Mulani’s slog attempt found Akash Parkar at mid-wicket leaving the new boys needing 20 off 14 deliveries. But a six each from Subramanian and Yogesh Pawar in a space of three deliveries turned the tide completely in Aakash Tigers’ favour, leaving them needing only half a dozen in 10 balls.

Subramanian and Pawar chased those down with three deliveries to spare, capping off a brilliant team effort from the Tigers in their first-ever match.

Score kya hai?

Aakash Tigers Mumbai Western Suburbs 148 for 5 (Aakarshit Gomel 41, Kaustubh Pawar 34, Kalpesh Samant 2-30) beat

Triumph Knights Mumbai North East 147 for 6 (Suryakumar Yadav 90*, Karan Shah 14, Anjdeep Lad 2-12)

For the complete match scorecard, click here.

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