Nashik and Pune look for second win in MPL

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Pune June 17, 2023: Eagle Nashik Titans will look to notch up the second win in the Maharashtra Premier League (MPL) on Sunday afternoon at the MCA International Stadium against Solapur Royals.

In their opening match, Nashik defeated Chhatrapati Sambhaji Kings by four runs in the D/L method while Solapur Royals faced a five-wicket defeat against Ratnagiri Jets.

Openers Arshin Kulkarni and Harshad Khadiwale set the platform for a big total and would love to repeat the feat. However, skipper Rahul Tripathi, young all-rounder Siddhesh Veer, and Mandar Bhandari would like to step up with the bat.

Although, the rain interruption changed the dynamics of the match, Nashik tweakers- left-arm spinner Akshay Waikar and leggie Prashant Solanki, who moved from Mumbai to Maharashtra this season, were crucial in the team’s victory. Solapur batters will have to be wary of the duo.

Solapur Royals’ skipper Satyajeet Bachhav is confident about his team’s performance in the game. “The rain interruption disrupted our momentum. We know where the game slipped from our grasp. But our coach Chaminda Vaas asked to not fuss over the defeat and focus on the next game,” Bachhav, 30, said.

The left-arm spin dup of Bachhav and icon Vicky Ostwal will have to lead the bowling attack while Maharashtra opener Yash Nahar will have to step up at the top.

All eyes on Ruturaj

On the opening night of the MPL, over 20,000 fans thronged the MCA Stadium to witness Puneri Bappa skipper Ruturaj Gaikwad at his very best. Along with his opening partner, Pawan Shah Pune made a mockery of Kolhapur’s target.

If the pair gets going on Sunday night, it will be difficult for Chhatrapati Sambhaji Kings bowlers. They are followed by reliable Suraj Shinde and Yash Kshirsagar to form sold batting unit for Pune.

Left-arm pacer Sachin Bhosale and Piyush Salvi bagged three wickets each in the opening match and along with Rohan Damle, Shubham Kothari will look to restrict Chhatrapati Sambhaji Kings to a moderate total.

For the Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar outfit, young skipper Rajvardhan Hangargekar, experienced campaigner Mohsin Sayyed and left-arm spinner Jagdish Zope will have to step up in the bowling attack. As for the batters, barring Murtaza Trunkwala and Saurabh Nawale, none could get going against Nashik.

If Chhatrapati Sambhaji Kings could up their overall performance by a couple of notches, they will be able to give Pune a run for their money.


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