Irani Trophy 2016: Rest of India smash records to pick up win

Irani Trophy 2016: Rest of India smash records to pick up win

Naman Ojha Irani Trophy
(Photo Source: Twitter)

The Rest of India stunned Mumbai as they chased down the highest total in Irani Trophy history in the 2016 edition of the Irani Trophy. Having dominated the match for four days, the complacency became evident as the Rest of India capitalized and chased down the total of 481 for an improbable victory.

Day one began with Mumbai batting first on a god batting wicket. Akhil Herwadkar and Jay Bista made hay while the sun was shining by stitching together an impressive 193-run partnership. Bista in particular, was severe on the ROI bowling attack with some amazing shots. He reached his century in just 90 balls after striking 15 boundaries and a six. However, his concentration deserted him as he was trapped leg-before by Krishna Das. Herwadkar’s impressive innings too came to an end after amassing 90. Mumbai’s most impressive player of the season, Shreyas Iyer began playing with the flamboyance he had shown all through the Ranji season. He was joined by starlet Suryakumar Yadav. The duo plundered away, reaching their half centuries. Stuart Binny finally got the breakthrough, by picking up the important wicket of Shreyas Iyer. Skipper Aditya Tare and Suryakumar Yadav pile on another 114 runs as the day came to an end with Mumbai firmly in the driving seat at 386/3.

Day 2, new day, same old story. Having been unbeaten on 88 overnight, the impressive Suryakumar Yadav continued his onslaught and brought up his century in style with a boundary. The century marked his 10th in domestic cricket. He was well supported by Aditya Tare, who scored a decent 65 before nicking one to Naman Ojha. Siddesh Lad made the most of his chance after being dropped by Shahbaz Nadeem to score a brisk 66. Unwilling to bring the curtains down on the team innings, Aditya Tare waited until the final batsman Shardul Thakur was dismissed. The scorecard read 603, only the second time Mumbai had crossed the score of 500. Faiz Fazal and Srikar Bharat came out to bat with barely 15 overs   of play left in the day. The miseries for ROI continued as Bharat was snapped up by Abhishek Nayar on Day 2.

Day 3, perhaps the most crucial of days for the ROI in particular, as Tare tossed the ball to his experienced lieutenant – Abhishek Nayar. While Nayar held the fort at one end, Shardul Thakur dismissed Fazal as the latter nicked one to the keeper. Jayant Yadav and Sudip Chatterjee held the fort for a while before Nayar dismissed Jayant Yadav for 46. Karun Nair was the stood out among the ruins of the ROI batting lineup with an impressive and patient 94. He was well supported by Sheldon Jackson who made a gritty yet brisk 37. An unlikely source, Jaydev Unadkat began saved the ROI from their blushes with a very well made 48 while Ankit Rajpoot was declared absent hurt with a knee injury. The third day concluded with ROI behind Mumbai by 299 runs.

While many would have expected the follow on to be enforced, Aditya Tare decided to bat once more with Day 4 looming over the horizon. This time, however, it was the turn of ROI to fight back. Jayant Yadav was impressive with the ball, picking up 4 wickets. Jaydev Unadkat picked up 3 wickets in support as the Mumbai batting lineup was absolutely torn apart by some impressive and tight ROI bowling. Only Jay Bista (38), Suryakumar Yadav (49), Siddesh Lad (60) and Shardul Thakur (13) crossed double figures as Mumbai was shot out for 182. Thus, Day 4 concluded with the Rest of India requiring 478 for victory.

Day 5 began with Faiz Fazal and Srikar Bharat sounding their intent of winning. Fazal smashed a wonderful century as the mammoth target, for the first time in the entire match looked seemingly reachable. Although Fazal began an unprecedented onslaught on the Mumbai bowlers, Karun Nair signaled his intent with a few reverse sweeps. Stuart Binny and Sheldon Jackson deployed a few big hits as the ROI reached the total with relative ease and 4 wickets left in the bag. Karun Nair’s 94 and 92 ensured that he was named man-of-the-match.

Brief Scores

Mumbai 1st Innings 603 all out (S Yadav 156; J Yadav 4/132)

Rest of India 1st Innings 306 all out (Nair 94; Nayar 3/35)

Mumbai 2nd Innings 182 all out (Lad 60; J Yadav 4/93)

Rest of India 2nd Innings 482/6 (Fazal 127; Abdullah 5/154)