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    Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh register easy wins

    Indore: Jatin Saxena slammed an unbeaten 94-ball 101 as Madhya Pradesh breezed past Rajasthan by six wickets in the Central Zone Vijay Hazare Trophy match here Monday.

    Opting to field after winning the toss, Madhya Pradesh bowled out Rajasthan for 211 in 48.4 overs, and then comfortably chased down the target with 68 balls to spare at the Holkar Cricket Stadium.

    The 30-year-old Saxena struck 15 fours during his 152-minute stay at the crease.

    Anurag Singh was the best Madhya Pradesh bowler with figures of 3 for 41, while there were two wickets each for Ishwar Pandey, Anand Rajan and Rameez Khan.

    Khan also did well with bat, scoring a patient 46 off 69 balls with the help of six fours. More importantly, he was involved in a stand of 87 for the third wicket with Saxena, after the latter added 83 for the second wicket with opener Anand Singh, who scored 32 off 40 balls.

    Dishant Yagnik top-scored for Rajasthan with a knock of 63 off 71 balls. He hit three fours and two sixes during his stay in the middle.

    In another match in the Central Zone here, Akshdeep Nath scored a quickfire unbeaten 70 while pacer Imtiaz Ahmed shone with a three-wicket haul as Uttar Pradesh defeated Vidarbha by 96 runs.

    Needing 287 to win, Vidarbha were bundled out for 190 runs in 42 overs, losing the plot in the middle after being comfortably placed at 114 for 2. Batting first, Uttar Pradesh rode on Nath's 47-ball 70, laced with eight fours and two sixes, and half-centuries by openers Prashant Gupta and Tanway Srivastava to post a challenging 286 for 6.

    Apart from the trio, skipper Suresh Raina also played his part with the bat, scoring 35 off 47 balls with the help of three sixes. Nath's blitzkreig was studded with eight fours and two sixes, which helped the visitors score close to 300-run mark. For Vidarbha, Amol Jungade picked up three wickets for 52 runs while Shrikant Wagh, Mangesh Joshi and Akshay Kolhar chipped in with a wicket apiece.

    For Vidarbha, opener Kolhar played a fine knock of 76 off 97 balls as none other batsmen could hang around for long. Urvesh Patel was the other notable contributor for the hosts with 36. Apart from Imtiaz's 3 for 38, Raj Bahadur, Amit Mishra and Ali Murtaza accounted for two wickets each.