In a beautiful gesture, Delhi star Gautam Gambhir left behind his on-field rivalry, forgetting the bitter defeat in the recently-concluded Ranji Trophy final against Vidarbha to congratulate the winners. Vidarbha crushed Delhi by nine wickets at Indore’s Holkar Stadium on Monday (January 1) to end their fairy-tale run in the Ranji Trophy on a perfect note.
Seven-time winners Delhi were thoroughly outplayed by Vidarbha who were making their maiden appearance in the title-decider. Vidarbha did not have the best of starts with the bat on day four as they added only 19 runs to their overnight score of 528 for 7. However, the 547 runs in the first innings gave the inexperienced finalists a huge lead of 252. Delhi’s batsmen then failed to put up a strong show once again, doing just enough to avoid a humiliating innings defeat.
The national capital-based side began their second innings on a good note with experienced Gambhir looking good before his 36-run knock was cut short by Rajneesh Gurbani. A century-plus stand between Dhruv Shorey and Nitish Rana gave Delhi some bleak hopes of a fightback, but the failure of other batsmen saw the side folding up for 280, thus setting a paltry 29-run target. Vidarbha shakily began the chase, losing skipper Faiz Fazal cheaply before Sanjay Ramaswamy and Wasim Jaffer took the side home.
Tributes have been pouring in from all quarters for the newly-crowned champions, and Gambhir also joined the bandwagon. The veteran batsman took to Twitter to laud Vidarbha, calling them worthy winners and advising them to enjoy the moment to the fullest.
“Well done Vidarbha on winning the Ranji Trophy. I can tell you from experience that there will be fewer better days than this one. Congrats @faizfazal U guys deserve it all as u had consistency in ur corner @BCCI @BCCIdomestic @faizfazal,” he wrote.
Well done Vidarbha on winning the Ranji Trophy. I can tell you from experience that there will be fewer better days than this one. Congrats @faizfazal U guys deserve it all as u had consistency in ur corner @BCCI @BCCIdomestic @faizfazal
— Gautam Gambhir (@GautamGambhir) January 1, 2018