The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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India Senior knocked out

Bangalore: A sparkling 107 by Rahul Dravid enabled India B score a 63-run win over the Sourav Ganguly-led India Senior in the TVS Salve Challenger Series match here on Thursday.

Chasing a victory target of 339 in 50 overs at an asking rate of 6.78, India Senior ended with 275 for seven.

With this second defeat — they had lost to India A by 27 runs on Wednesday — Senior are eliminated from the tournament.

After Friday’s rest day, India A will meet India B in an inconsequential match on Saturday. It will, at best, be a dress rehearsal for Sunday’s title clash between the two.

Chasing such a huge total was never going to be easy. The 113-run partnership between Hemang Badani, who hit an unbeaten, quick-fire 61 with four boundaries and one over, and Sanjay Bangar for the sixth wicket only delayed the inevitable after India Senior were reduced to 150 for five in 30 overs.

Senior lost an early wicket when Ambati Tirupati Rayudu was snapped up by Shiv Sundar Das off Ajit Agarkar for four. The other opener, Parthiv Patel, hit six fours on his way to an enterprising 30, made off 29 balls, before giving a straight-forward catch to Yuvraj Singh at gully.

At 49 for two, Sourav joined Reetinder Singh Sodhi and the duo tried to keep the momentum going, taking the team’s score past 100 in the 18th over.

But, Sourav eventually fell while trying to boost the scoring rate. Attempting a huge hit off Sarandeep Singh, he stepped out but missed the delivery to be stumped by V.S. Thilak Naidu for 25, made off an equal number of balls with four boundaries.

Sourav and Sodhi shared a 70-run partnership in 74 balls. Sodhi (51) was then taken at deep mid-on by Sarandeep off Jai Prakash Yadav. He smashed two sixes, and five fours in his 78-ball knock.

V.V. S. Laxman was bowled by by Sairaj Bahutule for 18, leaving Senior at a desperate 150 for five.

Badani and Bangar’s partnership for the sixth wicket was aided mainly by poor fielding by India B. Badani was dropped by Sarandeep and Dinesh Mongia off Bahutule, while Naidu missed a stumping chance off the same bowler.

Bangar was dropped by Satyajit Parab off Mongia. Bangar was eventually stumped by Naidu in the 47th over for 63.

Earlier, Man of the Match Dravid guided his side to the huge score with a superb century. He was ably supported by Agarkar, who made 57. The duo put on 136 runs for the third wicket in 134 balls. Vijay Bharadwaj chipped in with a quick-fire unbeaten 41 (29 balls, four fours, one six), while Das and Yuvraj contributed 33 and 30, respectively.

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