In a gripping Irani Cup final, Rest of India clinched victory with a 175-run margin, thanks to Saurabh Kumar’s phenomenal 10-wicket match haul, outclassing Saurashtra in a thrilling contest.
In an exhilarating Irani Cup final, Rest of India emerged victorious with a resounding 175-run win over Saurashtra. Left-arm spinner Saurabh Kumar was the star of the show, finishing with a remarkable match haul of 10 wickets for 108 runs, propelling Rest of India to the title.
The third day of the contest witnessed the culmination of the first innings as Saurashtra managed to add just two more runs to their overnight score of 212 for 9, with Saurabh Kumar clinching four wickets for 65. This left Rest of India with a 94-run advantage.
Rest of India’s openers, B Sai Sudharsan (43) and Mayank Agarwal (49), displayed a strong start, forming an impressive 85-run partnership. Dharmendrasinh Jadeja eventually managed to break the partnership by dismissing Agarwal, caught behind, in the 29th over. Sudharsan, too, eventually lost his wicket to Parth Bhut, who later removed Sarfaraz Khan for 13. Jadeja returned to dismiss Hanuma Vihari for 22 in the following over.
Parth Bhut’s inspired performance triggered a dramatic collapse as Rest of India lost six wickets for just 22 runs. They were ultimately bowled out for 160, setting Saurashtra a target of 255. Bhut’s exceptional effort in the second innings earned him figures of 7 for 53, securing a career-best match haul of 12 wickets for 147.
In response, Saurabh Kumar continued his dominance, dismissing Saurashtra’s opener Chirag Jani in only the second over. He went on to claim the wickets of Samarth Vyas (10) and pinned Cheteshwar Pujara (7) in front of the stumps. Saurashtra found themselves in deep trouble at 51 for 8 after losing four wickets for just 18 runs. A brief resistance was provided by Dharmendrasinh Jadeja and Prerak Mankad with a 28-run partnership, but Saurabh Kumar returned to dismiss the last two batsmen, ultimately dismissing Saurashtra for a mere 79. He ended the innings with outstanding figures of 6 for 43.
B Sai Sudharsan was the top run-scorer of the match, accumulating a total of 115 runs, including an impressive 72 in the first innings. On the other hand, Parth Bhut was the standout bowler of the contest, finishing as the leading wicket-taker.
In a thrilling encounter, Rest of India showcased remarkable skills, thanks to the brilliance of Saurabh Kumar, securing the Irani Cup title with an emphatic 175-run victory over Saurashtra.