Kalyani (West Bengal), Feb 28:
Fans who turned up to watch a M S Dhoni special returned disappointed even as Jharkhand cruised to a comfortable seven-wicket win over Services for their second victory in the Vijay Hazare Trophy here today.
Chasing a stiff 277, Jharkhand did not require services of their captain ‘cool’ as Saurabh Tiwary (102 not out off 103 balls; 3×4, 6×6) and Ishank Jaggi (116 not out off 92 balls; 10×4, 4×6) put together an unbroken 214-run partnership to script a fluent chase with 22 balls to spare.
He may not have played a role with the bat but Dhoni’s tips during the drinks break played a big role in their win, Jaggi later revealed.
“Mahi bhai advised us to play in a calm and composed manner. He told us, ‘If you play with patience runs will come. It’s about staying there and finish the game’,” Jaggi said.
The lefthander Tiwary added: “We played without any pressure well aware of the fact that MS comes next.”
Jharkhand had a shaky build-up and were reduced to 65/3 inside 17 overs but poor fielding from Services let the duo build on a firm stand. Yet to open his account, Tiwary was dropped at mid-off by Shakti Malviya off Poonam Poonia, while Jaggi got a reprieve on 25.
At 107/3 midway into their innings, the match tilted heavily in favour of Services with required run rate going past six.
It was an ideal situation for the ‘finisher’ Dhoni as the crowd kept on shouting his name in anticipation but Tiwary and Jaggi did not take a step wrong and complemented each other in their solid left-right combination.
They kept rotating strikes and got an odd boundary or six in every over providing a calm assurance in the dressing room as the crowd started to become frustrated and shouted ‘Saurabh Tiwary Hai Hai’.
Tiwary however took it in a positive spirit and said: “We must understand that they’re emotional as Mahi bhai never played here…Being a professional I did not mind. We were subjected to much more sledging on the field.” (PTI)