Veteran India discard Gautam Gambhir scored a duck as Himachal Pradesh hammered Delhi into submission with an emphatic 185-run win in a Vijay Hazare Trophy group B encounter, in Bhubaneshwar on Sunday.
This is second defeat in a row for young Rishabh Pant-led Delhi. Thy will have to win all their remaining matches in order to harbour hopes of qualifying for the knock-outs.
Batting first, Himachal Pradesh piled up a massive 339 for 8 in 50 overs with opener Prashant Chopra smashing his way to 159 off 140 balls with 24 boundaries and three sixes.
He added 115 for the third wicket with Paras Dogra (77 off 65 balls) that had four boundaries and as many sixes. Debutant left-arm pacer Kulwant Khejroliya took 3/61 while other seamer Navdeep Saini had figures of 3/63 to show for his effort.
In reply, Delhi were shot out for 154 in 37 overs with six players failing to cross double figures. Gambhir was out in the second over without troubling scores. The highly-rated Rishabh Pant is also having a poor tournament getting out for two after scoring 5 in the first game.
Debutant Sarthak Ranjan scored a sedate 37 off 56 balls with five boundaries.
Off-spinner Dheeraj Kumar wreaked havoc with 5/24 in eight overs.
In the other match in Chennai on Sunday, Akhil Herwadkar scored a fine fifty as Mumbai defeated Rajasthan by five wickets in a truncated Group C match of the Vijay Hazare Trophy.
In a match reduced to 38-over-a-side, Rajasthan scored 181 for nine and in reply, Mumbai comfortably reached the target in just 29.1 overs, losing five wickets in the process.
Put in to bat by Mumbai, Rajasthan lost four of their wickets with just 50 runs on the board, before Salman Khan (37) and Mahipal Lomror (49) managed to steady the boat.
The duo put on a crucial 68 runs together for the fifth wicket.
Lower down the order, Kamlesh Nagarkoti chipped in with an important 21 runs to take the team to a respectable total.
For Mumbai, Shardul Thakur (3/47) was the pick of the bowlers.
Chasing 182 for victory, Mumbai got off to a good start with opener Herwadkar (50) and one-down batsman Shreyas Iyer (41) taking the team past 100-run mark, having shared a 67-run stand for the second wicket.
After Iyer's dismissal, Herwadkar found and able partner in skipper Aditya Tare (36 not out) and the two put on a 51-run partnership for the fourth wicket to almost drive Mumbai home.
Mumbai eventually reached 184 for five with 53 balls to spare.
For Rajasthan, Tajinder Singh claimed three wickets for 45 runs.
Rajasthan: 181 for 9 in 38 overs (Mahipal Lomror 49, Salman Khan 37; Shardul Thakur 3/47).
Mumbai: 184 for 5 in 29.1 overs (Akhil Herwadkar 50, Mahipal Lomror 49; Tajinder Singh 3/45).
Summarised scores of other Group C matches:
1) Andhra beat Madhya Pradesh by 2 wickets.
Madhya Pradesh: 127 all out in 40.2 overs (Saransh Jain 56; D Siva Kumar 3/17, B Ayyappa 3/33).
Andhra: 131 for 8 in 37.5 overs (Hanuma Vihari 58 not out; Ishwar Pandey 3/31).
2) Gujarat beat Goa by 78 runs.
Gujarat: 277 for 9 in 50.0 overs (Parthiv Patel 80, Priyank Panchal 57; Rituraj Singh 3/61).
Goa: 199 all out in 45.5 overs (Amogh Desai 61, Snehal Kauthankar 64; Rujul Bhatt 5/38).
At KIIT Bhubaneswar:
Himachal Pradesh 339/8 (Prashant Chopra 159, Paras Dogra 77, Kulwant Khejroliya 3/61 in 10 overs)
Delhi 154 in 37 overs (Sarthak Ranjan 37, Rishabh Pant 2, Gautam Gambhir 0, Dheeraj Kumar 5/24)
HP won by 185 runs.
At Tangi, Cuttack:
Uttar Pradesh 159 in 36 overs (Rinku Singh 37, Aswin Crist 2/38)
Tamil Nadu 160/3 in 27.5 overs (Dinesh Karthik 56, Vijay Shankar 58). TN won by 7 wickets.