Delhi medium-pacer Vikas Tokas picked up a four-wicket haul to help the Gautam Gambhir-led side edge past Services by three wickets in a North Zone match and enter the knockout stage of the Vijay Hazare Trophy one-day tournament, in Dharamsala on Friday.
Needing 147 for victory, Delhi made heavy weather of their chase by failing to get partnerships going but finally got their target in 34.4 overs.
Juggling with their opening combination in every match of the tournament so far, Gambhir (4), who struck a fluent 93 in the last match, came in with Unmukt Chand (2) but soon the score read 6 for 2.
Virender Sehwag, who also looked to be back in form after his smashing 80 in the previous game, threw away his wicket after a quickfire 20.
The middle-order followed the same regimen and the batsmen withered away good starts to always give Services a
ray of hope.
Rajat Bhatia top-scored with a patient 34 as wicketkeeper-batsman Puneet Bisht (15 not out) guided the team home alongwith Sumit Narwal (1 not out).
Pace spearhead Suraj Yadav, new-ball partner Shadab Nazar and Nerender Singh picked up 2 wickets each.
Earlier electing to field, Delhi bowlers, led by the in-form Tokas, hurt Services by picking up regular wickets to bundle the Yashpal Singh-led side for a paltry 146 in 40.1 overs.
Pace spearhead Narwal started the rot by picking up Services opener Pratik Desai (19) and wicketkeeper-batsman
Nakul Verma (0) on consecutive deliveries to be on a hat-trick, only to be foiled by Rajat Paliwal (12).
Left-arm orthodox bowler Varun Sood also chipped in with a couple of wickets and sent back a dangerous-looking opener Devender Lochab (40), who remained the highest-scorer of the innings.
But Tokas it was who troubled the Services batsmen time and again to pick up his second consecutive four-wicket haul after he registered figures of 4-41 in Delhi’s previous win against Haryana by the same margin.
Delhi with three wins from five matches managed to scrape through into the next round with a better run-rate than
Himachal Pradesh and ended second in the table led by Punjab.
Brief Scores: Services 146 all out in 40.1 overs (Devender Lochab 40, Ashutosh Aman 22; Vikas Tokas 4-43)
Delhi 148/7 in 34.4 overs (Rajat Bhatia 34, Virender Sehwag 20; Suraj Yadav (2-23), Shadab Nazar (2-36), Nerender Singh (2-37).
Punjab reach knockouts
Punjab on Friday sealed a berth in the knockout stage of Vijay Hazare Trophy after scoring a comfortable three-wicket victory over hosts Himachal Pradesh in their final North Zone group match.
Opener Amitoze Singh (50) scored a half-century while Gurkeerat Singh missed out his fifty by just one run as Punjab overhauled the 197-run target with 12 overs to spare at Luhnu Cricket Ground to finish on top of the points table.
Punjab bowlers did a splendid job to bowl out Himachal for a meager 196 and the hosts paid the price for poor batting as they missed out on qualifying for the next stage.
Punjab (+0.557), Delhi (+0.428) and Himachal (+0.263) all ended the group stage with 12 points each but the first two teams qualified due to their better Net Run-rate.
Brief Scores: Himachal Pradesh 186 allout (Paras Dogra 53, Rishi Dhawan 42; Sandeep Sharma 3/39) lost to Punjab (Amitoze Singh 50, Gurkeerat Singh 49; )
Mumbai thrash Gujarat
Skipper Suryakumar Yadav overshadowed young Shreyas Iyer, who struck his maiden List-A ton, with a 45-ball unbeaten 81 as the duo guided Mumbai to a comfortable seven-wicket victory over Gujarat in the Vijay Hazare Trophy match for west zone.
Invited to bat after the opposition captain won the toss, Gujarat managed to put up 257 for seven in the allotted 50 overs, but that did not prove to be enough with Mumbai completing the chase in 42.3 overs at Motera.
Earlier, Rohit Dahiya, coming into bat at number eight, top-scored for the hosts with an unbeaten 55 off a mere 26 balls, his innings comprising four sixes and as many fours.
Brief Scores: Gujarat (Rohit Dahiya 55, R H Bhatt 46, S K Patel 44; Iqbal Adullah 2/31, Saurabh Netravalkar 2/52) lost to Mumbai (Shreyas Iyer 105, Suryakumar Yadav 81 Wasim Jaffer 60)
Saurashtra win against Maharashtra
Arpit Vasavada missed a century by four runs while Australia-bound Cheteshwar Pujara struck 86 as Saurashtra thrashed Maharashtra by 63 runs in a West Zone leg match of the Vijay Hazare Trophy.
Pujara and Vasavada stitched 110 runs for the second wicket as Saurashtra piled up 303 runs for five wickets.
Chasing the stiff target, Maharashtra could only score 240 for eight in their 50 overs to lose the inconsequential match.
Both Saurashtra and Maharashtra finished their West Zone engagements and they failed to advance to the knock-out round.
Brief Scores: Saurashtra: 303 for 5 in 50 overs (Cheteshwar Pujara 86, Arpit Vasavada 96; Domnic Joseph 2/56).
Maharashtra: 240 for 8 in 50 overs (Ankit Bawne 110 not out; Siddharth Trivedi 3/30).
J&K beat Haryana, both ousted
Jammu and Kashmir scripted a fine eight-run win over Haryana in a an inconsequential league match of the Vijay Hazare Trophy (North Zone) one-day tournament.
J&K posted a challenging 284 for eight after being put in to bat and limited Haryana to 276 all out in 49.4 overs.
Either side failed to progress in the competition. J&K won three of their five matches while Haryana could only manage a win in five games. Punjab and Delhi advanced from North Zone.
Brief scores: J&K 284 for eight (Shubham Khajuria 45, Ian Chauhan 64, Samiullah Beigh 47; Amit Mishra 2/58) beat Haryana 276 all out (Joginder Sharma 64; Ram Dayal 3/58, Parvez Rasool 2/40, Waseem Raza 2/48).