New Delhi: Vidarbha has created history by winning the Ranji Trophy for the first time as they beat Delhi by 9-wickets at Indore. It was a performance with which coach Chandrakant Pandit would be extremely proud of as Vidarbha had a firm grip on the match right from the very start. Faiz Fazal and boys did not let the momentum slip for the entire match. In fact that has been the secret to Vidarbha's success this year. They outclassed all their much fancied opponents, and had won four games from six league matches.
There were a few remarkable performers for the team who helped Vidarbha win their first Ranji title. Here is a look at those players:
Aditya Sarwate: The all-rounder, still not a very known name in the domestic circuit, did his reputation a world of good as he picked 29 wickets in six games. Not only that, Sarwate chipped in with the bat whenever the situation demanded and scored 330 runs in the entire season. This also includes a match-winning 79 runs against Delhi in the finals. It was his partnership against Akshay Wadkar that tilted the match in favour of Vidarbha.
Faiz Fazal: The captain of the side, he led from the front and scored a mammoth 912 in the entire season. The southpaw smashed five hundreds, with 206 being his highest score that came in the match against Himachal Pradesh. The experienced campaigner also rotated his bowlers well, that brought them good returns. In the entire tournament, he had just one ordinary game, against Karnataka in the semifinals, where he could only score 12 runs in two innings.
Sanjay Ramaswamy: This guy was one of the main reasons why Vidarbha could go the distance in the Ranji Trophy. He started off brilliantly against Punjab and scored 161 runs. This innings was instrumental in defeating Punjab in their home, and that really set the tone for rest of the tournament. After that Sanjay got two more hundreds—182 against Bengal and 115 versus Himachal Pradesh. He along with Fazal provided great starts to Vidarbha.
Rajneesh Gurbani: Having made his debut in 2016, Gurbani was a revelation this season. He picked up 39 wickets in just six games this year. After starting his campaign in rather ordinary fashion against Punjab, he really came to the fore in the match against Himachal Pradesh, where he returned with eight wickets in the match. Whether his hattrick in the finals, or his 12 wickets in the semis against Karnataka was more important, is a question of debate.
Akshay Wadkar: The youngster made his debut only in the match against Goa, when the season was well underway. In the leagues, he had an ordinary showing with the bat, but it was only in the knockout stages that he announced his arrival. In the quarters against Kerala, Wadkar scored 53 and 67 respectively, that proved crucial for his team. Though his best was reserved for the finals against Delhi where he scored his maiden first-class ton. He strung a big partnership with Sarwate, that helped his team take big 1st innings lead.
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