A round-up of Day 1 of the Ranji Trophy quarter-final matches played on Thursday.
Skipper R Vinay Kumar led from the front with some devastating bowling and picked up a six-wicket haul including a hat-trick to help Karnataka bundle out Mumbai for 173 in the Ranji Trophy quarter-final that began in Nagpur, on Thursday.
Kumar, who made most of the conditions which aided pace bowling after inserting Mumbai in on winning the toss, returned with impressive figures of 6 for 34, including the hat-trick completed in two overs, as 41-time champions Mumbai crumbled in only 56 overs on day one of the five-day match at the VCA Stadium in Jamtha.
To continue their domination, Karnataka replied with 115 for 1 by stumps, as they placed themselves 58 runs adrift of Mumbai with their in-form opener Mayank Agarwal unbeaten on 62 in 83 balls with M Abbas (12 not out) for company.
Karnataka, who topped Group ‘A’, are all set to take the first innings lead.
Kumar also became the third bowler to complete a hat-trick against Mumbai, the other two being B Kalyanasundaram for Tamil Nadu in the 1972-73 Ranji final and Raghuram Bhat for Karnataka in the 1981-82 season.
He became the sixth bowler to take a hat-trick in the knock-out stage of the national championship, the last one to achieve the distinction being S Sen Sharma for Bengal against Delhi in the pre-quarter final of the 1993-94 season.
Kumar wreaked havoc on the Mumbai batting line-up as he removed young and in-form opener Prithvi Shaw (2), edging to first slip Karun Nair, with the last ball of his first over with the score on 6.
Then with the first ball of his next over, he dismissed the other opener Jay Bista (1) in a similar fashion, and then completed his hat-trick by trapping Akash Parkar (0) in front of the wicket to reduce Mumbai to 7 for 3.
Kumar later scalped Siddhesh Lad, Akhil Herwadkar and Karsh Kothari to complete his devastating spell.
Mumbai were struggling at 74 for 7 before medium pacer Dhawal Kulkarni, who came in to bat at number nine, counter-attacked with a knock of 75 in 132 balls, to take his team beyond the 150-run mark.
Kulkarni struck nine fours and two sixes. The only other notable contribution came from seasoned Herwadkar (32 off 75 balls).
Scores: Mumbai 173 all out (Dhawal Kulkarni 75, Akhil Herwadkar 32; R Vinay Kumar 6-34) v Karnataka 115 for 1 (Mayank Agarwal 62 not out, M Abbas 12 not out).
Spinner Vikas Mishra takes three as Delhi reduce MP to 223/6
Left-arm spinner Vikas Mishra struck thrice, helping Delhi reduce Madhya Pradesh to 223 for six on Day 1 of the Ranji Trophy quarter-finals in Vijaywada.
Opener Ankit Dane (59) and Naman Ojha (49) batted well for Madhya Pradesh but could not get the big score their team wanted.
Harpeet Singh frustrated the Delhi bowlers with an unbeaten 47 towards the end of the day and was batting alongside Puneet Datey when stumps were called.
Delhi struck early after opting to field as medium pacer Navdeep Saini trapped opener Rajat Patidar in front of the stumps.
Dane then struck a 59-run stand with Shubham Sharma (17) before the opener was adjudged lbw off pacer Vikas Mishra.
Ojha held the innings together after Dane's dismissal, stitching a 59-run stand with Devendra Bundela (17) before the duo departed in quick succession to leave Madhya Pradesh in trouble at 157 for five.
Mishra was the stand out bowler for Delhi with three wickets for 40 runs in 24 overs.
Scores: MP 223/6 in 90 overs (Dane 59, Ojha 49; Mishra 3/40).
Akshay takes two wickets, Vidarbha struggling at 45/3
K C Akshay claimed two wickets to help Kerala reduce Vidarbha to 45 for three on the opening day of the match which was truncated due to wet outfield in Surat.
On a day when only 24 overs of play was possible, Vidarbha lost three wickets after electing to bat.
Opener Faiz Fazal (2) got out cheaply following the start of the match after tea.
Although the other opener R R Sanjay (17) and Wasim Jaffer (12) reached the double digit marks, they failed to keep their wickets intact.
At the close of play, Ganesh Satish and Karn Sharma were both batting on 7 each.
While Akshay accounted for both Sanjay and Jaffer, returning with figures of two for 14, M D Nidheesh claimed one for 12.
Scores: Vidarbha 1st innings: 45 for 3 in 24 overs (R R Sanjay 17; K C Akshay 2/14).
Gujarat on top despite Easwaran ton
Opener Abhimanyu Easwaran showed his mettle under pressure as his patient 129 enabled Bengal to score 261/6 at stumps against defending champions Gujarat in Jaipur.
Courtesy Easwaran's sixth first-class hundred and his 175-run stand for the fifth wicket with veteran Anushtup Majumdar (94), Bengal's score had a semblance of respectability after being reduced to 59 for 4 at one stage.
Easwaran, who is on national selection committee's radar, showed perfect big match temperament as he fished his team out of troubled waters. His 246-ball knock had 17 boundaries.
It was the second new ball that did the trick as he edged one off Chintan Gaja (2/75 in 20 overs) to Samit Gohil.
With Bengal playing five specialist bowlers on a greenish Sawai Man Singh track, the tail-enders would now need to get the team past 300-run mark.
Scores: Bengal 1st innings: 261/6 (Abhimanyu Easwaran 129, Anushtup Majumdar 94, Ishwar Chaudhary 3/49, Chintan Gaja 2/75) vs Gujarat.