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Shreyas Iyer hits 111 balls for 95 in the Ranji Trophy Final, but frustratingly falls short of a century

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<p>Hard times pass; only the strong survive them. Shreyas Iyer, who has had a turbulent year so far, demonstrated this for everyone to see today as the brilliant batsman scored an incredible 95 runs for his Ranji team, Mumbai, in the final versus Vidarbha.</p>
<p><img decoding=”async” class=”alignnone wp-image-500631″ src=”https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/03/theindiaprint.com-shreyas-iyer-hits-111-balls-for-95-in-the-ranji-trophy-final-but-frustratingly-fal.jpg” alt=”theindiaprint.com shreyas iyer hits 111 balls for 95 in the ranji trophy final but frustratingly fal” width=”977″ height=”732″ title=”Shreyas Iyer hits 111 balls for 95 in the Ranji Trophy Final, but frustratingly falls short of a century 6″></p>
<p>In the greatest event of all, the Ranji Trophy 2024 final, Iyer—who was coming off a run of underwhelming performances with the bat for both Mumbai and India—finally turned things around.</p>
<p>Following the all-around mastery of Shardul Thakur in the first innings, in which he scored an incredible 75 off just 69 balls and dismissed veteran opener Dhruv Shorey for a duck, Mumbai managed to bowl out their opponents for a pitiful 105 and maintain a commanding 119-run lead prior to the commencement of their second innings.</p>
<p>Mumbai, however, had a rough start, losing two wickets for only 34 runs, until the innings was steadied by veteran captain Ajinkya Rahane, who was assisted by youthful player Musheer Khan as well.</p>
<p>But it was Shreyas’ turn to enter the field at 164-3. And at the pinnacle of them all in domestic cricket, when Vidarbha was expected to lose the match, Shreyas at last lived up to the expectations.</p>
<p>Iyer took on the Vidarbha bowlers, who were eager to hit him with short balls in an attempt to get him out, but he looked confident and aggressive with his footwork. He smashed them for 10 boundaries and 3 sixes on his way to a remarkable innings of 95 runs.</p>
<p>But, a surge of blood made Iyer seek to go big off Aditya Thakare’s delivery to achieve his peak with a bang, finally resulting in a high toe-ended loft that was comfortably collected by Aman Mokhade. With only five runs separating him from a century, Iyer fell prey to the shivers of the anxious nineties.</p>
<p>Nevertheless, Iyer put up an innings-rejuvenating 150+ run partnership with the record-breaking 19-year-old Musheer Khan, who became the youngest Mumbai player to reach a century in the Ranji final, towail over a helpless Vidarbha bowling attack.</p>
<p>For Iyer, the new year brought with it even more challenges. Iyer’s form started to gradually deteriorate after a brilliant performance in the 2023 Cricket World Cup, and by the beginning of this year, it had reached an all-time low.</p>
<p>Since the start of the year, the Mumbai top-order batsman has failed to score more than 50 runs in any of his innings in any format, and in a total of 14 innings in Test cricket.</p>
<p>His poor performances for India in the Test series against South Africa and England, together with his alleged neglect of family responsibilities, proved to be a short-term recipe for catastrophe.</p>
<p>Iyer and another Indian colleague Ishan Kishan finally lost the patience of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), which issued a strong message by excluding them from the list of 30 players who received yearly player contracts in the recently announced retainerships.</p>
<p>Iyer, who was in Grade B the previous year, has been suspended after this month’s controversy around injuries. Due to poor form, the right-hander was left out of India’s Test team for the remaining three Test matches against England. He then claimed to have injury concerns and withdrew from Mumbai’s Ranji Trophy matches.</p>
<p>Iyer was thus picked for Mumbai’s 16-man Ranji Trophy semifinal and final roster. Even though he had the perfect opportunity to disprove everyone who had doubted him, Shreyas’s poor luck and form ultimately caught up with him as he managed to only score a 3 in the semifinal.</p>
<p>However, it seems that Iyer has hushed any skeptics as Mumbai keeps cruising to a commanding 452-run lead and inflicting further suffering on Vidarbha.</p>


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