Yuvraj Singh pillared Punjab's innings with a stately knock that laid the foundation for his team's convincing 58-run victory over Railways in the Vijay Hazare Trophy match played in Bengaluru on Tuesday.
The Kings XI Punjab star came out to bat in the eighth over and anchored his end as Shubman Gill fired at the other in the Elite, Group A division game. Gill fell in the 16th over after a quick fifty bringing in captain Mandeep Singh, who succumbed in the 21st over with the score now shaky at 96/3.
It's here when Yuvraj partnered Gurkeerat Singh for an unwavering 144-run stand that lasted until the 47th over. The pair complemented each other as Yuvraj remained patient and Gurkeerat kept it brisk. The KXIP batsman brought up his fifty in 87 balls with 4 fours and 2 sixes after which he accelerated.
While Gurkeerat completed his century, Yuvraj fell short ending with a score of 96 off 121 balls with 6 fours and 5 sixes.
Punjab registered 284/6 but Railways were set a target of 269 under the VJD method. The opposition, though, really couldn't keep it together as they got out for 210.
The nineties men
While this was Yuvraj's first fifty in the tournament, Manoj Tiwary scored his third on Monday with a 69 in the Group C match against Jharkhand. The Bengal skipper has been in fine touch as he has scored 216 runs in six games at an average of 36.00 in this year's Vijay Hazare Trophy.
Mayank Agarwal, another KXIP man, too has been in fine form. He scored a fast-paced 90 in just 111 balls for the Indian Board President's XI match against the visiting West Indies side. Opening the innings, he reached the boundary on 16 occasions with two of them as sixes, and established a 92-run partnership in just 124 balls with captain Karun Nair.
Incidentally, this was third score in the 90s for a KXIP player in two days after Marcus Stoinis' blazing 93* against Tasmania in the JLT One-Day Cup match in Sydney that gave Western Australia the victory.