CHENNAI: The young duo of Prithvi Shaw and Yashasvi Jaiswal made mincemeat of the inexperienced North East Zone attack as West Zone stood at 116 without loss at stumps on the curtailed opening day of the Duleep Trophy quarter-final at the MA Chidambaram Stadium here on Thursday.
Only 25 overs could be completed on the first day due to a combination of rain, wet outfield and bad light. While rain and wet outfield played spoilsport in the first two sessions, bad light forced a premature end to the day’s play. When play was possible, West Zone openers Shaw (61 batting off 66 balls, 5 fours, 4 sixes) and Jaiswal (55 batting off 84 balls, 9 fours, 1 six) shone the brightest with their 116-run alliance for the unbroken first wicket.
This was after North East Zone skipper Hokaito Zhimomi opted to field first in the team’s debut match in the competition. The first-timer had a forgettable opening-day outing at Chepauk as Shaw and Jaiswal were too hot to handle. While the diminutive Shaw played shots all around the park, Jaiswal took a special liking for cuts – hitting six boundaries combined towards the third-man and point regions.
“When the North East bowlers bowled short, I had the room to play the cut shots. I was waiting to play that shot,” the 20-year-old Jaiswal told reporters after the end of the day’s play. Shaw brought up his stroke-filled half-century after a maximum over mid-wicket, with Jaiswal completing his personal milestone with a single.
Jaiswal said that the plan was to punish the loose balls. “North East bowled some good overs. We (him and Shaw) tried to break the rhythm by staying in the middle. We needed to keep wickets in hand, so I had to stay there. If there is a bad ball, I need to score runs off it. That is how I think,” added the left-handed batter.
“I would say that the wicket (pitch) was pretty sticky. The ball was swinging a bit and the wicket (pitch) was not that good for batting. I have been playing with Shaw for four-five years now. We have good communication when we are out in the middle; we understand each other well. We talk to each other during both tough and easy times,” said Jaiswal.
BRIEF SCORES: In Chennai: West Zone 116/0 in 25 overs (P Shaw 61*, Y Jaiswal 55*) vs North East Zone. In Puducherry: East Zone 179/3 in 54 overs (S Gharami 68, A Majumdar 47, Virat Singh 43*) vs North Zone