Kolkata, Nov 3 (Ajit Weekly News) Riding on Shreyas Iyer’s splendid half-century (73 off 44), Mumbai thrashed Vidarbha by five wickets in the second semifinal to reach the final of Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy (SMAT) 2022 T20 cricket tournament at the Eden Gardens, here on Thursday.
After winning the toss and opting to bat first, Vidarbha posted a total of 164/7 in 20 overs with wicketkeeper batter Jitesh Sharma top-scoring with his 46 not out off 24 balls. In reply, Mumbai chased down the target in 16.5 overs.
It will be for the first time that Mumbai will play in the final of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy since the inception of the tournament. They will face Himachal Pradesh in the final on Saturday.
Chasing a competitive total, Mumbai lost the wickets of Ajinkya Rahane and Yashasvi Jaiswal early but the baton was carried forward by Prithvi Shaw (34) and Iyer and the team never looked in trouble.
Once Shaw got out, Iyer remained positive in his approach and cracked boundaries with great regularity. He also smashed Yash Thakur for 19 runs in the 14th over to put a stamp of authority on the chase in the company of Sarfaraz Khan (27).
In the end, Shivam Dube (13 off 4) smashed a couple of sixes to get his team home with 19 balls to spare.
Earlier in the evening, Vidarbha were rocked early as they lost two of their top three batters inside 4 overs. Soon after the powerplay, spinner Shams Mulani struck twice in the space of 12 balls to leave them reeling at 68/4.
Vidarbha got no momentum throughout the second half of the innings and it seemed that they would post a below-par score but Jitesh Sharma had other plans in the final over of the innings. He hit Mohit Avasthi for three sixes off the final four balls and helped his side post a total of some substance.
Brief scores: Vidarbha 164/7 in 20 overs (Jitesh Sharma 46 not out; Shams Mulani 3-20) lost to Mumbai 169/4 in 16.5 overs (Shreyas Iyer 73; Akshay Karnewar 2-24) by five wickets.
–Ajit Weekly News
News Credits – I A N S