Himachal Pradesh, Kerala and Haryana advance to quarterfinals

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Himachal Pradesh, Kerala and Haryana advance to quarterfinals

Shafali Verma (L), Shikha Pandey (M), Harleen Deol (R) © Getty Images

A valiant partnership of 110 runs between Shikha Pandey and Tejaswini Durgad went in vain as Himachal Pradesh won the last over thriller against Goa thanks to all-round performance from Harleen Deol at the C K Pithawala Ground. In another game, at the Lalbhai Contractor Stadium, in Surat, Kerala ended Nagaland’s unbeaten run despite another half-century from Kiran Navgire. In the third match of the day, Haryana put an end to Jharkhand's journey as their skipper Shafali Verma led them to a remarkable nine-wicket win.

With these wins, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala and Haryana have now qualified for the quarterfinals. 

Himachal Pradesh’s captain Sushma Verma won the toss and opted to bat first. Himachal’s openers Nikita Chauhan and Deol added 90 runs. Chauhan scored 43 runs off 37 balls including five fours and a six over midwicket. Rupali Chavan broke the partnership in the 14th over to give Goa some relief, but they could not stop Deol’s attack. She continued to make most of her opportunities and smashed 84 runs off 66 balls with 10 fours and two sixes.

Shivani Singh’s 19 off 12 and captain Verma’s quickfire 12 off six balls took Himachal Pradesh post 160 in the first innings as Deol remained unbeaten. For Goa, only Chavan and Metali Gawandar were amongst the wickets. 

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Goa’s chase started on the shaky grounds as right-arm pacer Anisha Ansari dismantled their top-order. Singh took a catch to dismiss Sanjula Naik for four. Ansari was on a hat-trick when she sent Purvaja Verlekar and Nikita Malik back with back-to-back deliveries in the fifth over. From 24 for three even before the end of the powerplay, Goa needed a miracle to save the match and they almost found it in Pandey and Durgad. 

The pair smashed 110 runs in just 76 balls to keep Goa in the hunt for the total. Durgad contributed 40 runs off 31 balls including three fours and a six. Captain Pandey, on the other hand, was at the core of the counter-attack with 77 off 50 balls. Pandey contributed with nine fours and three sixes, but her dismissal in the penultimate over made matters hard for Goa. Vice-captain Sunanda Yetrekar was run-out and they fell short as Poorva Bhaidkar was bowled for a duck on the last ball of the match.

At the Lalbhai Contractor Stadium, unbeaten Nagaland won the toss and opted to bat first. Opener Navgire continued her form with the bat and smashed another half-century. She did not get any support from the top-order. Poonam Khemnar, batting at four and Gautami Naik, at five were the only other players to score in double digits for Nagaland. Darsana Mohanan made a crucial breakthrough in the 15th over to send Navgire back for 56. Nagaland managed to put 116 for five in the first innings. 

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In reply, Kerala got off to a fast chase when the opening pair Akshaya and Jincy George added 34 runs in the five overs. Khemnar gave Nagaland some hope with the wicket of George, but Akshaya found a partner in captain Sajana S. The partnership of 43 runs between them took the air out of Nagaland’s counter-attack. Khemnar trapped Sajana in the front 21, but it was a little too late for the undefeated side from the plate group. 

Akshaya remained unbeaten on 57 to take Kerala to the quarterfinals and ended Nagaland’s run in the Senior T20 Trophy. 

In the third game of the day, Haryana picked up a resounding nine wicket win over Jharkhand to book a place in the quarter finals by virtue of an astounding allround effort from skipper Shafali Verma.

After being asked to set a score on the board, Jharkhand never really got going and kept losing wickets at regular intervals. With a run a ball 27, Monika top scored for Jharkhand and helped the team reach a respectable total of 110 runs for the loss of eight wickets.

Shafali was the pick of all the Haryana bowlers. She bagged two wickets in her four overs by giving away just 16 runs.

In pursuit of the target, Shafali propelled Haryana off to a flyer as she made the most of every scoring opportunity. Her unbeaten knock of 65* helped her side to romp home in just 11.2 overs. She was equally well supported by her opening partner Reema Sisodia, who scored a brilliant knock of 43 runs.

Brief Scores:

Himachal Pradesh 167 for 2 in 20 overs (Harleen Deol 84*; Metali Gawandar 1/14) beat Goa 164 for 7 in 20 overs (Shikha Pandey 77; Anisha Ansari 3/22) by three runs

Nagaland 116 for five in 20 overs (Kiran Navgire 56; Darsana Mohanan 2/17) lost to Kerala 117 for three 18 overs (Akshaya A 57; Poonam Khemnar 2/23) by seven wickets 

Jharkhand 110/8 in 20 overs (Monika 27; Shafali Verma 2/16) lost to Haryana 112/1 in 11.2 overs (Shafali Verma 65*, Devyani 1/22 ) by nine wickets