Vijay Hazare Trophy: ‘Patel’ power pushes Gujarat into semis

Alur (Karnataka): Gujarat skipper Parthiv Patel struck an exemplary fifty, while Axar Patel chipped in with an unbeaten 36 after picking up two crucial scalps to edge out Vidarbha by two wickets and advance to the semi-finals of the Vijay Hazare cricket tournament at Alur (Karnataka) on Thursday.

Chasing 196 for a win at the KSCA Cricket (3) Ground, Gujarat rode on opener Parthiv’s strokeful 57 to achieve the target in 48.1 overs. Gujarat though did see wickets tumble as left-arm medium Ravikumar Thakur and off-spinner Akshay Wakhare bagged three wickets each, but Axar made sure that he stays firm with Harshal Patel (15 not out) to ensure victory.

Earlier electing to bat, Vidarbha started off well with fifties from opener Faiz Fazal (52) and Jitesh Sharma (51), but soon their innings ran into rough weather. After the 96-run openig stand, one-down Ganesh Satish also contributed with a useful 47 but the rest of the batting folded like a pack of cards.

Sharing the new ball with Rush Kalaria, Jusprit Bumrah bagged four wickets, while off-spinner Rujul Bhatt and man of the match Axar chipped in with two wickets apiece. Gujarat will take on Tamil Nadu, who edged past Uttar Pradesh by one wicket in the other quarter-final in Bengaluru, in second the semi-final at Alur (Karnataka) on December 26.

Brief Scores:
Vidarbha 195 in 48 overs (Faiz Fazal 52, Jitesh Sharma 51, Ganesh Satish 47; Jasprit Bumrah 4-38) Gujarat 198/8 in 48.1 overs (Parthiv Patel 57, Axar Patel 36 not out; Rujul Thakur 3-46, Akshay Wakhare 3-30).