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|East Zone trounces North by 8 wickets|
Monday, January 19 2004 19:16 Hrs (IST)
Set to make 226 in 50 overs for victory, East blasted the rival attack to reach the target in 38 overs.
Provided a fine platform of 67 by openers M S Dhoni (40 off 34 balls) and Nikhil Haldipur (26 off 19 balls), East had little trouble negotiating the North bowlers as they cantered home rather easily.
Gandhi (75, 96 b, 8x4) and Pawar (79, 84 b, 8x4), hit unbeaten knocks as East recorded their second consecutive win in the championship.
After North skipper Ajay Jadeja pulled out of the match due to indisposition, stand-in captain Dinesh Mongia promptly decided to bat after winning the toss.
The North batting, however, tottered as East medium pacers Sanjib Sanyal and Laxmi Ratan Shukla grabbed two early wickets each to reduce North to 49 for four in the 15th over.
Mongia, who appeared to shape well for a long innings on a pitch that had uneven bounce, nicked a Shukla delivery to wicket keeper Deep Dasgupta for 31.
However, Mithun Manhas (72, 108 b, 6x4) and all-rounder Reetinder Singh Sodhi (68, 99 b, 1x6, 1x4) revived the innings with a 134-run stand for the fifth wicket. The total was given some respectability as tailender Sarandeep Singh hit a quickfire 22 off 11 balls. Sanyal, who bowled a steady line, picked four wickets for 48 runs.
North Zone 225 for 7 in 50 overs (M Manhas 72, R S Sodhi 68, D Mongia 31, S Sanyal 4 for 48) lost to East Zone 227 for two in 38 overs (K Pawar 79 not out, D Gandhi 75 not out, M S Sodhi 40, S Gill 2 for 62) by eight wickets.
East Zone prevails over West in a thriller