| Murali Vijay
Rajkot: Murali Vijay scored a superb hundred and shared a 192-run stand with Cheteshwar Pujara (79) as India B walloped India A by 139 runs to emerge champions in the NKP Salve Challenger Trophy tournament, here on Tuesday.
Electing to bat, India B scored a mammoth 356 for three and then bundled out India A for 217 in 42.1 overs to claim the winners trophy at Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium.
India A fought through in-form batsmen in Shikhar Dhawan (61) and Ajinkya Rahane (64) but their middle-order let them down while chasing a huge target.
Rising young all-rounder Baba Aparajith scalped both Dhawan and Rahane and with that India A’s challenge ended.
Only Manish Pandey (47) and Abhimanyu Mithun (24) managed to get some runs, but that only helped to reduce the margin of defeat.
Stuart Binny was the most successful bowler for India B with three wickets at the cost of just 26 runs.
The India B batsmen took full advantage of the flat track as they sent the rival bowlers on leather-hunt.
Not only did Vijay and skipper Pujara wield their willows with success, but also Kedhar Jadhav excelled by playing an unbeaten innings of 60 runs.
Jadhav’s knock provided finishing touches to their innings as he rattled up a quick and unconquered 79-run stand for the fourth wicket with Ravindra Jadeja (25).
Pravinder Awana and Abhimanyu Mithun proved very costly for India A as they leaked 79 runs each in their 10-over quotas.
It was Vijay who set the foundation for the big score with his tremendous batting right from the start of the innings.