SMAT 2022-23 Final, HP vs MUM: Kotian’s 3-15, Sarfaraz’s 36* guide Mumbai to maiden title
SMAT 2022-23 Final, Himachal Pradesh vs Mumbai: Tanush Kotian’s 3-15, Mohit Avasthi's 3-21 and Vaibhav Arora's 3-27 are top performances. Mumbai beat Himachal Pradesh by three wickets in Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2022 final and win maiden title.
Brief Scores: Himachal Pradesh 143/8 (Ekant Sen 37, Mohit Avasthi 3/21, Tanush Kotian 3/15) lost to Mumbai 146/7 (Sarfaraz Khan 36*, Shreyas Iyer 34, Vaibhav Arora 3/27) by 3 wickets
Player of the Match: Tanush Kotian (3/15)
It was the maiden final for both Himachal Pradesh and Mumbai in Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy in its 2022-23 edition. HP have been the stand out team in this season, being unbeaten throughout the tournament. Mumbai consisted of star players who are looking to get back into India’s national team. The likes of Ajinkya Rahane and Prithvi Shaw hoped for a great show in the final to knock at the selectors’ doors. The final was played at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
The team that held its nerves eventually won the final. Mumbai were looking down and out, needing 28 off 17, when KD Singh dropped Sarfaraz Khan, who then tore apart the bowling of the same player in the next over, hitting two fours and a six to make it easy in the last over. Although Mumbai’s experience helped them seal the win, HP gave their all and should hold their heads high for putting up a spirited performance throughout the season. They won all but the final.
HP recover from a poor start to post a challenging total
HP faced early jolts when they were asked to take first strike. They lost opener Ankush Bains cheaply for 4, dismissed LBW by Mohit Avasthi. The Mumbai pacer then got number 3 batter Sumeet Verma to edge it behind for 8. Off-break bowler Tanush Kotian then came to the party, taking two wickets off successive balls in the 8th over.
Soon, HP fell to 58/6 in the 10th over, before a 60-run stand in 7.4 overs between Ekant Sen (37) and Akash Vasisht (25) resurrected the innings. Both fell in the space of 8 runs. Finally, a 12-ball 21* cameo by Mayank Dagar saw HP post a challenging 143/8.
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Mumbai ride on batting cameos to cross the finishing line
Mumbai rode on a few cameos with the bat to win the final as HP bowlers kept a tight leash on the scoring rate throughout. First, it was number 3 batter Yashasvi Jaiswal who cracked 27 off 28 balls to build a stand of 41 runs for the third wicket with Shreyas Iyer.
Iyer also played his part, making a 26-ball 34. However, quick wickets in the death overs made life tough for Mumbai. A dropped catch by KD Singh turned the match in Mumbai’s favour as it let off Sarfaraz Khan, who plundered 2 fours and a six in the 19th over bowled by the same bowler to bring it down to 6 runs off 6 balls. Tanush Kotian then pulled a short ball from HP skipper Rishi Dhawan for a six to seal the win.
Let’s take a look at the top three performances from the game between Himachal Pradesh and Mumbai in Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2022 final.
Mohit Avasthi (3/21)
Mumbai’s Mohit Avasthi bowled a perfect first spell, taking two crucial wickets to put HP onto the backfoot straight away. First, he dismissed opener Ankush Bains LBW with an inswinger. He then got the ball to bounce from a good length to catch an edge of number 3 batter Sumeet Verma, who played a wild drive only to nick it behind.
Avasthi then returned to dismiss the best HP batter of the day, Ekant Sen, who mistimed a big hit straight to Mumbai captain Ajinkya Rahane at short cover. Ekant was just looking to cut loose, but Avasthi cut short his innings and ended up with figures of 3/21.
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Tanush Kotian (3/15)
Tanush Kotian carried forward the good work after Avasthi ended his two-wicket first spell. Kotian first got Nikhil Gangta to hole out in the deep to Aman Hakim Khan to end his promising innings of a 14-ball 22. Kotian then made Nitin Sharma play it early and hit it back to the bowler for a golden duck.
The second opener Prashant Chopra was the third scalp of Kotian. Prashant (19) played a square cut uppishly to a diving Prithvi Shaw. Kotian’s 3/15 ensured that HP never got the momentum after the two early strikes.
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Vaibhav Arora (3/27)
HP were defending a low score of 143 and it looked like Mumbai will go past the finishing line with ease. But Vaibhav Arora had other plans. He dismissed the dangerous Shreyas Iyer for 34, taking a catch off his own bowling with a brilliant back of a length delivery.
Still, HP needed to pick up quick wickets in the death overs to stay in the hunt for the trophy. Arora did the job, making Shivam Dube mistime a sweep to be caught by substitute Amit Kumar, and dismissing Aman Hakim Khan caught and bowled in the same over. His twin strikes in the 17th over brought HP back into the game.
The other limited overs domestic tournament of India, which is the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2022-23 played in the List A (50 overs format) will kick off at different centres across the country from November 12.
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