Kolkata: Already assured of a place in the knock-out stage, Bengal rode on opener Shreevats Goswami's fluent 133 to beat Assam by 18 runs in a high-scoring East Zone match of the Vijay Hazare Trophy, here on Sunday.
Opting to bat, Goswami smashed 133 off 135 balls with the help of 14 fours and three sixes Manoj Tiwary made a steady 57 off 71 balls to help Bengal amass 312 for the loss of six wickets.
Apart from Goswami and Tiwary, Sudip Chatterjee (35) and skipper Laxmi Ratan Shukla (36) were the other notable contributors for Bengal.
Off-spinner Swarupam Purkayastha scalped two wickets for 58 for Assam.
In reply, skipper Dheeraj Jadhav and Parvez Aziz put on 118 runs for the opening stand to keep Assam in the hunt.
Jadhav made 115 off 137 balls which was studded with 10 boundaries, while Aziz's 52 came off 61 deliveries during which he struck five fours and one hit over the fence.
But once the partnership broke, it became more and more difficult for Assam to overwhelm the stiff target and the visitors finally ended at 294 for eight.
Medium pacer Sayan Mondal (4/59) was the wrecker-in-chief for Bengal with a four-wicket haul.
Bengal have already secured a place in the quarterfinals before the match and have finished the East Zone leg on top with full 16 points from four games.
The loss was, however, heartbreak for Assam, who narrowly lost out on a place in the knockout phase to Odisha.
Like Assam, Odisha too lost its last match to Jharkhand today by 45 runs but managed to sneak into the next round because of a better net run rate.
Both Assam and Odisha finished the league phase with identical eight points from four games, but Assam were knocked out of the tournament because of a inferior net run rate.
Bengal: 312 for six wickets in 50 overs (Sreevats Goswami 133, Manoj Tiwary 57; Swarupam Purkayastha 2/58).
Assam: 294 for eight in 50 overs (Dheeraj Jadhav 115, Parvez Aziz 52; Sayan Mondal 4/59).