Wicketkeeper-batsman Upendra Singh Yadav hammered an unbeaten 41-ball 70 (4 fours, 5 sixes) to power Uttar Pradesh to a five-wicket win over Tamil Nadu in a Group ‘B’ match of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy T20 cricket tournament here on Monday.
Earlier, sent into bat Tamil Nadu made 168 for 7 in the quota of 20 overs, thanks to a brisk knock of 61 by skipper Dinesh Karthik and a half-century by the stylish opener M Vijay (51).
In reply, Upendra Yadav kept the team in the hunt with his attacking strokeplay and a 52-run fourth-wicket partnership with Shubham Chaubey (35) was instrumental in UP securing victory with a ball to spare.
In the Tamil Nadu innings, the experience of Vijay and Karthik came to the fore as the duo forged a 75-run stand for the second wicket after opener N Jagadeesan (2) fell early.
Vijay started off with a flurry of boundaries before settling down and proving to be a good foil for his captain.
Karthik, meanwhile, was in his element, as he smote 5 fours and 4 huge sixes.
However, Tamil Nadu frittered away the platform provided by Karthik and Vijay and save for Vijay Shankar (28, 14 balls, 2 fours, 2 sixes), the others could not help the team put up a bigger score.
UP got off to a steady start with openers Akshdeep Nath (25, 28 balls, 2 fours, 1 six) and captain Samarth Singh (21, 15 balls, 1 fours, 2 sixes) negotiating probing spells from T Natarajan and G Periyaswamy.
Upendra Yadav, who came in at the fall of Samarth, upped the ante with some aggressive batting and the Tamil Nadu bowlers couldn’t find a way to dislodge him.
He stayed till the end to see the team home, inflicting Tamil Nadu’s first defeat (after two wins).
Meanwhile, Vidarbha beat Manipur by 70 runs for a third straight win. The two-time Ranji Trophy champion leads Group B with 12 points from three games.
Brief scores: Vidarbha 150 for 6 in 20 overs (Jitesh Sharma 73 not out, Rushabh Rathod 25) beat Manipur 80 for 9 in 20 overs (Sagatpam Singh 36, Yash Thakur 4/5, DG Nalkande 2/15).
Vidarbha: 4 points, Manipur: 0.
Tamil Nadu 168 for 7 in 20 overs (Dinesh Karthik 61, Murali Vijay 51, Vijay Shankar 28, Moshin Khan 2/13, Ankit Rajpoor 2/35, Kuldeep Yadav 2/37) lost to Uttar Pradesh 174 for 5 in 19.5 overs (Upendra Singh Yadav 70 not out, Shubham Sanjay Chaubey 35, Akshdeep Nath 25, G Periyaswamy 2/35).
UP: 4 points, TN: 0.