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Ranji Trophy 2022-23, Final: Saurashtra defeat Bengal to win second Ranji title

Ranji Trophy 2022-23, Saurashtra vs Bengal, Final: Saurashtra defeat Bengal by 9 wickets to claim their second championship after winning the 2019-20 title previously.

Ranji Trophy 2022-23, Saurashtra vs Bengal, Final: Saurashtra beat Bengal and clinch Ranji Trophy 2022-23 Title | Walking Wicket (Images_ ©WasimJaffer14_Twitter)
Saurashtra beat Bengal and lift 2nd Ranji Trophy Title (Images: ©WasimJaffer14/Twitter)

Brief Scores: Saurashtra 404 (Arpit Vasavada 81, Chirag Jani 60, Mukesh Kumar 4/111) & 14/1 (Vishvaraj Jadeja 10*, Akash Deep 1/5) beat Bengal 174 (Shahbaz Ahmed 69, Abhishek Porel 50, Chetan Sakariya 3/33) & 241 (Manoj Tiwary 68, Anustup Majumdar 61, Jaydev Unadkat 6/85) by 9 wickets

Player of the Match: Jaydev Unadkat 3/44, 6/85

Player of the Series: Arpit Vasavada 907 runs

Ranji Trophy 2022-23 finally got its winner in Saurashtra who overcame the challenge of Bengal in the final by 9 wickets. Saurashtra dominated the match throughout with bat and ball, with Bengal just managing to avoid an innings defeat. The 2022-23 Ranji Trophy final was a repeat of the 2019-20 edition where Saurashtra had beaten Bengal to win their maiden title.

Saurashtra bowl out Bengal for 174 in first innings

Saurashtra won an important toss and put Bengal in to bat at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata. Saurashtra medium pacers made the most of the early moisture in the pitch and reduced Bengal to 6 for 65 in the first session. Saurashtra captain Jaydev Unadkat led from the front, dismissing Abhimanyu Easwaran for a 4-ball duck in the first over of the match. Chetan Sakariya and Chirag Jani then came to the party dismissing four of the top 6 batters.

Bengal fought back with a stand of 101 runs for the seventh wicket between Shahbaz Ahmed (69) and Abhishek Porel (50). Spinner Dharmendrasinh Jadeja broke the stand, dismissing Ahmed for 69. Bengal then folded up for 174. Sakariya took 3/33, while Unadkat bagged 3/44.

Saurashtra take lead of 230 runs

Saurashtra didn’t have a great start either, being reduced to 109/4 before the lower middle order first stabilised the innings before shutting Bengal out with a big lead of 230 runs.

Opener Harvik Desai made 50 before he was dismissed by Mukesh Kumar. Arpit Vasavada then rescued Saurashtra with a stand of 95 runs for the fifth wicket with Sheldon Jackson before the latter was dismissed for 59 by Abhishek Porel. Arpit departed for a score of 81 before Chirag Jani stretched Saurashtra’s lead with a knock of 60.

Saurashtra were eventually all out for 404, taking a match-winning lead of 230 runs. For Bengal, Mukesh Kumar was the most successful bowler, taking 4 for 111.

Ranji Trophy 2022-23, Saurashtra vs Bengal, Final_ Jaydev Unadkat named player of the match in Ranji Trophy 2022-23 finals _ Walking Wicket(Images_ ©JUnadkat_Twitter)
Unadkat named player of the match in Ranji Trophy finals (Images: ©JUnadkat/Twitter)

Same old story for Bengal again

Just like in the first innings, Bengal’s second innings had an upper order collapse, losing three wickets for 47 with both Sakariya and Jaydev Unadkat doing the damage. Number 4 batter Anustup Majumdar then resurrected the innings with a stand of 99 runs for the fourth wicket with captain Manoj Tiwary. However, Majumdar lost his wicket for 61 at the fag end of the third day to have Bengal under pressure again. Bengal ended Day 3 at 169/4, still trailing by 61 runs.

On Day 4, all hopes of Bengal rested on captain Tiwary and Shahbaz Ahmed to give a challenging target to Saurashtra. However, Ahmed lost his wicket through a run out for 27 on the fourth day morning to create more troubles for Bengal. Captain Tiwary (68) then fell 4 runs later as Bengal stared at an innings defeat.

A last-wicket stand of 36 runs between Mukesh Kumar and Ishan Porel helped Bengal give a target of 12 runs to Saurashtra and avoid an innings defeat. Unadkat emerged as the highest wicket-taker in the innings, taking 6/85. Saurashtra chased down 12 runs in 2.4 overs but lost opener Jay Gohil for a golden duck.

The Ranji Trophy 2022 winners Madhya Pradesh will now take on Rest of India in the Irani Trophy fixture on March 1 at the Captain Roop Singh Stadium in Gwalior.

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