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|West beats South Zone in a cliffhanger|
Monday, January 19 2004 19:32 Hrs (IST)
Chasing a victory target of 248, former Indian opener Sadagopan Ramesh (42 - 3x4) and Vidyut Sivaramkrishnan (47) gave South Zone a flying start fetching 98 runs for the opening stand but their innings bundled out for 245 all out in allotted 50 overs in reply to West Zone's 247 for seven.
Former Indian spinner Nilesh Kulkarni,who replaced injured Sairaj Bahutule, struck in the 17th over having Sivaramkrishnan (47) caught off Vinayak Mane. Sivaramkrishnan scored 47 facing 50 deliveries including three hits to fence.
Ramesh, who notched up a brilliant 97 against Central Zone in the opener at Silchar, appeared opened up when he misread a delivery of off-spinner Pawar only to see the bails dislodged. Ramesh 's 87 minutes knock included three fours to score 42.
S Sriram, who came in after Sivaramkrishnan's departure, played brilliant knock to hit up 54 with the help of three fours and he along with Arjun Yadav (13) brought in 45 runs for the fourth wicket.
South Zone rather threw away the match as their six batsmen were given run out. At one stage, the defending champions needed 30 runs from 30 deliveries but their four remaining batsmen were fell well short of the crease in an attempt to pick runs. Suresh (22) and Sreekumar Nair(22) were the other contributors in South innings.
West Zone: 247 for seven in 50 overs (H Kanitkar 103, Nishit Shetty 47, Ranjit Khirid 34, D Ganesh 4/39) beat South Zone 245 all out in 50 overs (S Ramesh 42, V Sivaramkrishnan 47,S Sriram 54, Romesh Pawar 2 /36 ) by two runs.
East Zone trounces North by eight wickets