Manipur defeated Meghalaya by an innings and 73 runs in their U-16 boys’ Vijay Merchant Trophy match in Cuttack today.
Manipur have been the best team all season in the plate group, winning four out of their five matches, with the other being a draw.
Yesterday, Manipur were 233/9 at stumps, leading by 154 runs after Meghalaya were shot out for just 79 in their first innings. Today, the last wicket was taken by Paisal Ali (1/34) without the addition of any runs but Meghalaya were dismissed in their second innings for just 81, which handed Manipur the massive win.
Meghalaya are currently second in the points table but the Nagaland-Mizoram match has yet to conclude, so the position is not final. Nevertheless, it was a strong performance from the team as they had to overcome a first match defeat to Sikkim, draw with Nagaland before defeating Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram.
The bowling, especially, has been a revelation, with Apandanka Marak and Gaurav Jyoti Thakuria finishing among the top 10 in terms of wickets. Apandanka is third nationwide with 34 wickets while Gaurav is ninth with 28. Both took three five-wicket hauls each and probably would have added more scalps had Manipur been made to bat again.