The fifth and final day of the Ranji Trophy 2019-20 final culminated with Saurashtra lifting the coveted trophy after 73 years. The Jaydev Unadkat-led side clinched the trophy on the basis of first inning’s lead against Bengal.
Saurashtra gathered 105 runs in 35 overs of the fifth day of the encounter before the players shook hands in the wake of a draw. An elated Saurashtra side was seen celebrating their third Ranji title. Arpit Vasavada was adjudged Man of the Match for his brilliant performance with the willow in the first innings. Vasavada smashed a brilliant ton (106 off 287 deliveries) to steer Saurashtra to a massive total of 425 runs.
After the Saurashtra bowling force toiled on the fourth day along with skipper Jaydev Unadkat continuing his wicketless spree in the match, Saurashtra retaliated on the fifth and final day of the match. Skipper Unadkat finally struck and how! He scalped the wicket of Anustup Majumdar to provide his side with a much-needed breakthrough. Post Majumdar’s dismissal at a point where Bengal’s scoreboard showcased 361/7, Saurashtra swept the rest of the wickets in the subsequent eight overs.
The Saurashtra bowling force curbed down Bengal at a total of 381/10. Dharmendrasinh Jadeja, who scalped a thri-fer, emerged as the best performer of Saurashtra’s bowling attack. Skipper Unadkat also rose to the occasion and scalped two wickets on the final day.
Jaydev Unadkat heaped praise on the Saurashtra side after clinching the trophy
Coming on to Saurashtra’s second innings, the opening pair of Harvik Desai and Avi Barot stitched a 38-run start for the first wicket. However, Shahbaz Ahmed drew first blood and showed the exit door to Harvik Desai (21). What followed was the dismissal of Vishvaraj Jadeja and Arpit Vasavada in quick succession. Shahbaz Ahmed struck twice as he scalped the wicket of ‘Man of the Match’ Vasavada and sent him back to the pavilion in no time.
The match culminated with Sudip Chatterjee picking up the wicket of Avi Barot and a draw was mutually agreed with Saurashtra amassing a total of 105/4 in their second innings.
Jaydev Unadkat heaped praise on his side and lauded the quality of cricket that Saurashtra has been delivering in the past eight years. Saurashtra have been part of four Ranji finals in the last eight years.
“I still remember my words (last year) and I remember telling you that the brand of cricket we are playing will continue for a few more years and we will win the title sooner than later. We’ve won the trophy for the first time in 73 years and I couldn’t be happier,” said an elated Unadkat post the triumph.
Saurashtra 1st innings: 425/10 (Arpit Vasavada 106; Akash Deep 4/98)
Bengal 1st innings: 381/10 (Sudip Chatterjee 81; Dharmendrasinh Jadeja 3/114)
Saurashtra 2nd innings: 105/4 (Avi Barot 39; Shahbaz Ahmed 2/32)
Saurashtra win the trophy the basis of first innings lead
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