Ahmedabad: A 109-run second-wicket stand between Ambati Rayudu (47) and Aditya Waghmode (66 not out) guided Baroda to a comprehensive seven-wicket win over Saurashtra in a West Zone leg match of the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy at the Motera 'B' ground on Thursday. The win, Baroda's second in three matches, helped the defending champions pocket four points and are now level with Saurashtra at eight points. Both the teams have a game in hand.
Chasing a modest 134 for victory, Baroda lost Kedar Devdhar off the first ball of the innings when he caught by wicket-keeper Sheldon Jackson off left-arm pacer Jaydev Unadkat. Rayudu, who hit four boundaries and a six in his 37-ball knock, along with Waghmode stabilised the innings before the former was caught by Jackson off the bowling of Unadkat.
Irfan Pathan (12), who came in next, too departed early but Waghmode hit eight boundaries and two sixes in his unbeaten 66-run knock and along with Jyot Chhaya (1 not out) took Baroda home without losing any more wickets. For Saurashtra, Unadkat took two wickets conceding 22 runs and Siddharth Trivedi chipped in with a wicket for 26 runs.
Earlier, put into bat first, Saurashtra got off to a good start but failed to capitalise on it and were restricted to 133 for eight in 20 overs. Bhushan Chauhan and captain Jaydev Shah put on 74 runs for the opening wicket. Shah was caught and bowled by leg-spinner Hardik Pandya for 45-ball 49, which included five hits to the fence and two over it.
The West Zone league of the tournament is now nicely poised. If Saurashtra beat Gujarat and Baroda beat Maharashtra tomorrow, there will be a three-way tie among Gujarat, Baroda and Saurashtra, following which net run-rate will come into play.