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Venkatesh Iyer sends a reminder to selectors with an all-round show like Madhya Pradesh Thrash Railways


The versatile KKR player Venkatesh Iyer played as an MP in the ongoing SMAT 2021.© BCCI / IPL

Indian hopeful Venkatesh Iyer smashed an unbeaten 41-ball-50 and also took two wickets to send a strong message to the national selectors during Madhya Pradesh (MP)’s seven-wicket win over Railways in a Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Group D match Friday. Courtesy of Venkatesh and co-contender for the national team, Avesh Khan (3/23), MP took a walk in the park by first limiting Railways to 97 for 9 in 20 overs and then the meager target at 13.5 to overtake.

Both Venkatesh and Avesh, who were stars for their respective franchises KKR and Delhi Capitals, were simply far above standard for the opposition.

Venkatesh (2/20 in 3 overs) came over himself as one change in the third and used his variations well to complement Avesh as Railways was four down in the Powerplay and never recovered.

The chase was never difficult, as Iyer scored three fours and two sixes from half of the runs in the chase. After excelling in IPL, Iyer was at his dominant best as none of the Railway bowlers under the leadership of former Indian attendant Karn Sharma could pose any serious threat.

Iyer and Avesh are in serious battle to make the T20 squad for the New Zealand series. It is also understood that BCCI has created a pool of players for the South Africa tour that has six white ball matches and Iyer’s name figures in that list.

In other matches of the group, Kerala beat Bihar by seven wickets while Assam Gujarat shocked by seven wickets.

Short scores: Railways 97/9 (Avesh Khan 3/23, Venkatesh Iyer 2/20) lost to Madhya Pradesh 100/3 in 13.5 overs (Venkatesh Iyer 50 none of 41 balls) by seven wickets.

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Bihar lost 131/5 in 20 overs (Sakibul Gani 53 off 41 balls, Basil Thampi 3/19) against Kerala 132/3 in 14.1 overs (Robin Uthappa had 57 off 34 balls, Sanju Samson 45 off 0 balls) by seven wickets .

Gujarat 89 in 19.2 overs (Piyush Chawla 21. Riyan Parag 2/23. Mukhtar Hussaon 3/20) lost to Assam 90/3 (Riyan Parag 20 none of 7 balls) by 7 wickets.

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