Kolkata: Delhi’s superb performance in the ongoing domestic season finally reaped rewards as they won their maiden Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 title, beating Rajasthan by 41 runs at the iconic Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Friday.
Having finished as runners-up in the Ranji Trophy, Delhi got their hands of the silverware, after they produced an all-round display, with skipper Pradeep Sangwan leading from the front.
Batting first, openers Gautam Gambhir and Rishabh Pant took Delhi off to a flying start as they scored 41 runs in just 4.4 overs before the veteran fell for 27 to leg-spinner Rahul Chahar. Pant was also sent back in no time by Khaleel Ahmed as Rajasthan clawed back into the contest in style.
However, a 48-run stand between Dhruv Shorey (21) and Unmukt Chand (53) resurrected the Delhi innings. Chand, who failed to score in the last match against Uttar Pradesh was on song as he hit four fours and three sixes to carry Delhi to 153/6 at the end of 20 overs. For Rajasthan, Chahar and Ahmed scalped two wickets each while Aniket Choudhary and Abhimanyu Lamba took one apiece.
In reply, Rajasthan could never settle themselves in the chase courtesy some poor batting. The opening partnership between Aditya Garhwal and Lamba lasted for just 22 runs after which the former joined forces with Salman Khan and stitched a brief 36-run stand.
But with Garhwal’s dismissal with the score at 77/3, Rajasthan could never get back into the game as the Delhi bowlers struck at regular intervals to take the game away from Choudhary’s side.
Apart from Garhwal, no other batsman could get past the 20-run mark which is an indication of how poor Rajasthan were with the bat on the day of the big final. Sangwan led the way, with the best bowling figures of 2/14. Kulwant Khejroliya and Pawan Negi scalped one apiece.
Eventually, it was Delhi who had the last laugh as they won the match by 41 runs and their maiden Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 title.
Rajasthan 112 all out in 19.1 overs (Aditya Garhwal 52, Mahipal Lomror 17; 2/14) lost to Delhi 153/ (Unmukt Chand 53, Gautam Gambhir 27; K Khaleel Ahmed 2/33) by 41 runs.