Yogesh Takawale grabs his opportunity at the top

After four innings in the lower-middle order, Takawale made the most of his chances when promoted up the order in successive matches.

Yogesh Takawale made his return to the domestic fold this season after a four-year absence but none of it showed on when he was pushed up the order to let him showcase his potential.

After four fruitless innings in the lower-middle order, the 34-year-old wicket-keeper was presented with the opportunity to open the innings in the Vijay Hazare Trophy Plate Group match against Arunachal Pradesh at Dehradun on Wednesday.

He made most of the opportunity and delivered. Takawale, who played for the SoBo Supersonics in T20 Mumbai earlier this season, scored a fluent 91 off 97 balls (11x4, 1x6) to help Nagaland chase down 212 and win the match comfortably by four wickets and nearly five overs to spare.

He first put up a 79-run opening partnership with Aosashi Longchar to give Nagaland a solid start before wickets fell at regular intervals. But Takawale used all his experience to glue the innings together before he departed in the 37th over with his side needing just 28 runs in 13 overs.

Earlier, the 34-year-old wicket-keeper was also instrumental in Arunachal Pradesh top-scorer Rahul Dalal's dismissal for 61, when he stumped him off Inakato Zhimomi's bowling in the 43rd over.

Her performance wasn't a one-off. On the next day, he missed a potential century again after he fell for 90 (121b, 12x4s) against Manipur.

Opening the innings again, he saw through an early wicket to put on 57 for the second with captain Rongsen Jonathan and 83 for the third with Temjentoshi Jamir before exiting in the 43rd over. His fall triggered a collapse as Nagaland lost their last seven wickets for 41 runs in just 36 balls, spearheaded by Bishworjit Konthoujam's hat-trick-laden 7/54, as they were bundled out for 241.

The score proved enough as Manipur lost the match by 5 runs.

All-round Abdulla steals the show

Elsewhere at Dehradun, Iqbal Abdulla starred with both bat and ball on Wednesday.

Iqbal Abdulla, who turns out for ARCS Andheri in T20 Mumbai, came in at number five and top-scored with a 75-ball 56 (3x4s, 1x6) to take Sikkim to a respectable 188 in their Plate Group game against Mizoram.

Padam Limboo derailed Mizoram's chase with six wickets but Abdulla played his part too, picking up two scalps while giving almost nothing away. He first trapped Parvez Ahmed in front for 1 and then prised out Lalhruai Ralte in his next over to reduce Mizoram to 32/7.

He ended up with figures of 5-1-19-2 as Mizoram folded for 64, handing Sikkim a massive 124-run win.

Your Comments