On 20th January 2018, nineteen postal circles teams turned out to enjoy All India Postal Tournament on beautiful lush green cricket ground of Postal Training Centre, Vadodara, Gujarat. The tournament was inaugurated by Shri Dashrath Pardeshi, former Ranji Trophy player of Gujarat and Vadodara teams. The goal was to promote sportsman spirit, friendship and team spirit among the staff of various postal circles in India
Friendly yet competitive cricket matches were played between the teams. All the matches were played in noisy and cheerful atmosphere. The competition, the excitement of the game, and the liveliness and spontaneous actions of the supporters was noteworthy throughout the tournament.
After finishing all knocks out matches, quarter finals and semifinals, the grand final match was played between Gujarat Postal Circle team and West Bengal Postal Circle team on 24th January 2018 at Postal Training Centre ground Vadodara.
Gujarat won the toss and elected to field first. The starting was not good for West Bengal team. The Gujarat fast bowlers have troubled the West Bengal batsmen right from the outset as they sent back Tirth Roay and Sougata Datta in quick succession. The batting conditions were difficult at the middle and the visitors were struggling. However, after the initial onslaught, the batting duo of West Bengal skipper P.S. Bhattachary (32 runs from 65 balls) Surojit Dass (40 runs from 41 balls) have steadied their ship. Finally they managed to get 157 runs in 37.5 overs.
Chasing 157 was never going to be easy and once Gujarat lost three wickets in the power play it was always going to be an uphill task. Chirag Jani who has been their best player in this tournament once again was the only player who showed resistance to battle it out there. Jesal Karia and Mehul Patel did provide support but the West Bengal bowling was too hot to handle. Both teams had the chance to win and the game was changing in every few minutes. The last 10 minutes were breathless and extremely exciting and finally the team Gujarat crossed the line and became the champion of All India Postal Cricket Tournament 2017-18.
In prize distribution ceremony, Hon’ble Chief Postmaster General of Gujarat Circle, Shri. Gautam Bhattacharya had given trophies and medals to the Champion in the presence of various dignitaries. Shri Vineet Mathur, Postmaster General, Vadodara Region and Shri Ambesh Upmanyu, Postmaster General, Ahmedabad Region had given trophies and medals to the first and second runners-up teams (West Bengal and Odisha). On this occasion Hon’ble CPMG addressed all the staff members and players and explained how sports can bring out fitness and which in turn can help in productive office work. At last he congratulated the Director and all team members of Postal Training Centre, Vadodara for arranging such a wonderful cricket tournament.