Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy: Punjab thrash J&K by 10 wickets
Srinagar: Riding high on crescendo, Punjab has registered another thumping win in the ongoing tournament, fourth consecutive, against Jammu and Kashmir to retain its top spot at the table.
Parvez Rasool-led Jammu and Kashmir after losing the toss, for the first time in four matches, was asked to bat first at KSCA Cricket Ground, Alur.
The unscrambled Jammu and Kashmir top order maintained an utmost caution to negotiate a demanding Punjab bowling attack, however it soon was the star-performer Siddarth Kaul who on behalf of his team finally broke through the partnership to open up floodgates.
Sammad who had a good previous game against Uttar Pradesh saw himself walking in when aggregate score of the team read 21/1.
Opening up, the young lad unleashed some serious stroke play, however it again was Kaul who did the damage to remove the batter at his individual score of 17 of 10 deliveries (4×4).
With no significant contributions from others, Shubham Pundir batting at number 5, took it to himself by scoring pivotal forty-odd runs before being rattled by Arshdeep Singh.
Jammu and Kashmir setting a target of 139/8, would have been hoping against hope to restrict a sturdy Punjab batting line-up.
As it happened, the Punjab strikers – Abhishek Sharma and Prabhsimran Singh – went all guns blazing to make the Jammu Kashmir bowlers look so hapless and helpless.
Mujtaba Yousaf, who had been most economical in the last two matches with even picking 3 wickets against a fairly strong UP side, was took to cleaners by Punjab batters. Yousaf in his two overs conceeded 26 runs even as his teammate Abid Mushtaq conceded 34 in as many overs without a wicket for each.
The opening pair never looked back and the game ended with the Punjab scoreline reading 140/0 in 14.3 overs.
With this win, the Punjab continous to remain at top of the table with a healthy Net Run Rate 2.814 albeit strucking a major dent to the position of Jammu and Kashmir with latest NRR for the latter reading as -0.132.
Suffering its second loss in last four matches in the tournament so far, Jammu and Kashmir would be up against Railways on Monday following to play its last group stage match.