Azim Kazi produced a timely half century to guide Maharashtra to a thrilling three-wicket win over Himachal Pradesh in a Group B match of the Vijay Hazare Trophy at Baroda on Sunday. After Maharashtra suffered a top-order batting collapse while chasing a modest 202, Azim scored 84 off 82 balls to take side past the finish line.
The top-four batsmen, including skipper Kedar Jadhav (1), departed for single digit scores, leaving the team reeling at 28/4. Azim and Naushad Shaikh (36) then stitched a 109-run partnership before the latter was trapped leg before by leg-spinner Priyanshu Khanduri. Azim, who hit 10 fours and a six in his innings, departed next.
Nikhil Naik (32*) and Shamshuzama Kazi (21*) then took Maharashtra home with eight balls to spare at the Gujarat State Fertilizer Corporation Ground. Arpit Guleria (2/24) was the pick of the bowlers for Himachal Pradesh.
Earlier, electing to bat, Himachal Pradesh could manage only 201/9 with Amit Kumar (62) hitting a half century to emerge the top-scorer for his side. His innings was laced with four boundaries and a six.
Openers Priyanshu Khanduri (15) and Prashant Chopra were off to a slow start. The two have added 34 runs for the first wicket in...