Batting first after winning the toss, Tamil Nadu posted 266 for seven, thanks to half-centuries from Baba Aparajith (57 off 105 balls), Shahrukh Khan (51 off 47 balls) and J Kousik (55 off 40 balls). The Dinesh Karthik-led team then managed to restrict Jharkhand to 199 for nine, with left-arm spinner Manimaran Siddharth (3 for 33) being the pick of the bowlers.
Following its second victory, Tamil Nadu is placed third in Elite Group B with eight points from four matches. While taking to the field, the southern state side came up with a surprise as Aparajith opened the batting alongside Narayan Jagadeesan. The pair adopted a cautious approach in the powerplay overs, playing out the new ball safely. But, Jagadeesan was dismissed for 30 by left-arm orthodox bowler Anukul Roy in the 17th over, bringing an end to the 59-run first-wicket stand.
Skipper Karthik (1), Pradosh Ranjan Paul (10) and Baba Indrajith (2) had short stays in the middle as Tamil Nadu struggled at 86 for four.
However, Aparajith and Shahrukh steadied the ship with a 45-run partnership for the fifth wicket.
But, the former eventually fell to left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem in the 35th over after striking six boundaries during his knock. New batsman Kousik joined Shahrukh at the crease, with the combination adding 50 quick-fire runs off 44 deliveries.
Just after getting past his fifty, Shahrukh was sent back to the pavilion by Bal Krishna. The 25-year-old’s innings included three boundaries and as many maximums. Despite the dismissal, Kousik continued on his merry way, smashing seven boundaries and two sixes before losing his wicket to speedster Varun Aaron.
Tailenders R Sai Kishore (29 not out off 20 balls) and M Mohammed (20 not out off 9 balls) delivered cameos at the end, hitting three maximums each. The duo made sure Tamil Nadu got past the 250-run mark.
Chasing 267 for its fourth successive win, Jharkhand never got going, losing its top-three for just 32 runs. Virat Singh (49 off 63 balls) and Sumit Kumar (40 off 66 balls) shared a 64-run alliance for the fourth wicket, but received little support from the lower middle-order.
Coming together when Jharkhand was tottering at 145 for nine, Rahul Shukla (42 not out off 25 balls) and Aaron (18 not out off 32 balls) put on an unbroken 54-run stand for the final wicket. But by then, the contest was done and dusted. While Siddharth picked up three wickets, Aparajith (2 for 46) and R Silambarasan (2 for 50) got two scalps apiece.
Brief scores: Tamil Nadu 266 for 7 in 50 overs (B Aparajith 57, J Kousik 55, Shahrukh 51, A Roy 3/41) beat Jharkhand 199 for 9 in 50 overs (V Singh 49, M Siddharth 3/33)