All five matches in every Vijay Hazare Trophy six groups were played. Traditionally to the tournament format, leaders of the groups went directly to quarterfinals, while runners-up entered a preliminary stage. Of course, that is actual for only five Elite Groups, while from the Plate Group, only the best team proceeded to preliminaries. Let’s go to the most important results of every sextet, where much drama was present this year. In Plate Group, Tripura performed dominantly and won all five games, scoring a run rate at the astonishing level of +2.642. The only opposition they could meet was the game against Meghalaya in the last round, as both sides had four victories each. However, there were no chances for runners-up on the pitch: 116/10 (39.5) – 118/1 (28). So, only Tripura goes to the playoffs.
The scenario for Elite Group A was written in Bollywood, as four teams grabbed three victories each. However, the best run rates belong to Himachal Pradesh (+0.551) and Vidarbha (+0.210). Quite unfortunate, such a result was for Andhra (+0.042) and Odisha (-0.200).
With no less creativity, producers came to Elite Group B, where also four teams finished with 12 points. However, the hopes of Bengal (-0.123) and Puducherry (-1.602) with a negative RR could be only on the points grabbed. So, quite predictably, Tamil Nadu (+1.047) and Karnataka (+0.784) go to the playoffs from first and second place, respectively. A full disappointment for Mumbai, who finished last with only one victory over Baroda.
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The most definite results came from Elite Group C, where Saurashtra earned 20 points with a run rate of +1.461. The runner-up position in this sextet belongs to Uttar Pradesh with also a great RR of +0.708. Other teams finished with a negative run rate and logically left the event.
Another group with a few contenders for playoffs was Elite Group D, as three teams gained four victories each. However, the better RR was shown by Kerala (+0.974) and Madhya Pradesh (+0.485), while Maharashtra (+0.104) was eliminated.
Elite Group E could finish similarly to the previous sextet, as both Rajasthan and Services took 16 points or four victories each. Although Services beat the leader in the last round, the run rate of +0.073 didn’t allow them to overcome Rajasthan with +0.993. Especially unfortunate the result was for Punjab, who played a draw in the last round with Goa and finished third with 14 points and RR of +1.086.
- In the preliminary stage, the following pairs will face each other:
- Uttar Pradesh vs Madhya
- Karnataka vs Rajasthan
- Vidarbha vs Tripura
- The matches of this stage will be played on December 19.
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