In a close encounter, Delhi defeated Punjab by one wicket at the Capital’s Roshanara Club grounds to enter the quarter-finals of Cooch Behar (U-19) cricket.
Electing to bat in the pre-quarterfinal tie, Punjab scored 283 in their first innings. They started poorly, losing five wickets for 50 runs and then were soon reduced to 127 for six.
However, opener Shivein Rakheja scored 115 to help Punjab go beyond 200. He was well-supported by wicketkeeper-batsman Eish Rao, who scored 79 runs batting at No. 8.
Pacer Aman Bharti was the best-performing bowler for Delhi, picking six wickets for 27 runs. Pacer Divansh Rawat and left-arm spinner Rounak Waghela took two wickets each.
In response, Delhi made 240 and conceded a 43-run lead. Only skipper Hardik Sharma could make a half-century. Tarun Bisht scored 49 while Kavya Gupta made 44.
For Punjab, Prabhkirat Singh and Garv Kumar took three wickets each.
Faced with a deficit, Delhi bowlers rocked Punjab skittling the Punjab team out for just 103 runs. Waghela bowled a match-winning spell of 5/18 in 8.5 overs while Rawat took 3/30.
Delhi had to get only 147 to win the game but they were made to huff and puff. Opener Yash Dabas scored 68 off 71 balls while Waghela chipped in with a vital 25. Once Dabas was dismissed as the fourth wicket, Delhi lost a flurry of wickets – six wickets for 16 runs.
But, somehow, they managed to go past the target.
Delhi, who had finished second in their group to enter the pre-quarters, now face Rajasthan in the quarter-final which will be played from December 17.
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