Haryana registered an emphatic six-wicket victory over hosts Karnataka to advance to the semi-finals of the Ranji Trophy, at the M Chinnaswamy stadium, in Bangalore, on Wednesday.
Haryana, in all likelihood, will meet defending champions Rajasthan, who are all but through in their quarter-final match against Hyderabad.
Following-on, Hyderabad were 138 without loss in the second innings after being dismissed for 144 in the first, in reply to Rajasthan's 421.
The semi-finals will be played from January 10.
After restricting Karnataka to 262 in their second innings, the visitors scored the required 142 runs in only 36.2 overs.
The reliable opening pair of Nitin Saini (52, 70 balls, 8x4) and Rahul Dewan (25) added 75 runs in only 17 overs to make the job easier for the winners.
This was after their 152-run opening stand in the first innings, which gave Haryana a decisive lead of 121 runs.
Troubled by the absence of their three quicks (Ranganath Vinay Kumar and Abhimanyu Mithun on national duty and S Aravind injured), Karnataka were outclassed by a side that had barely qualified for the knock-out from Group B.
The two factors that contributed to Haryana's defeat were their poor show in the first innings, getting out for a meager 151 and then allowing Haryana to score 272 despite having them on the mat at 188 for seven.
Having conceded a sizeable 121-run lead, Karnataka needed to score in the excess of 350 runs to force a win in the fourth innings. But they failed to deliver as a batting unit.
Resuming at their overnight 122 for three, the six-time champions were bowled moments after lunch.
Like Robin Uthappa on Day two, Ganesh Satish (33), Stuart Binny (34) and Sunil Raju (31) played themselves in before throwing away their wickets.
To make matters worse, umpire Amiesh Saheba adjudged Amit Verma leg before wicket when the ball was going down leg side.
The victory target would have been lot lesser had K P Appanna (31 not out) and N C Aiyappa (9) not produced 40 fighting runs for the last wicket.
Appanna struck five boundaries and one six during his undefeated 43-ball essay at the wicket. The contest could have been keener had C M Gautam snaffled the nicks induced by an accurate Aiyappa. The missed opportunities were to play on Karnataka's nerves as Saini and Dewan went about creaming the three-pronged seam attack with nonchalance.
There was a wee bit of excitement when Aiyappa castled Saini and Binny had Dewan gobbled up by Gautam (79 for two).
Karnataka's hopes rose again when Sunny Singh and Sachin Rana perished with scoreborad reading 107 for four. Both were dismissed by the military medium stuff bowled by S L Akshay (2 for 31).
But Prateek Pawar (27 not out) and Priyank Tehlan (25 not out) ensured there were no more hiccups as Haryana sealed the victory with a day to spare.
Brief Scores: Karnataka 151 & 262 v Haryana 272 & 144-4
Mumbai sight semis after 242-run first innings lead over MP
Formidable Mumbai are all but through to the semi-finals of the Ranji Trophy after gaining a huge 242-run first innings lead against Madhya Pradesh, at the Holkar Stadium in Indore.
Replying to Madhya Pradesh's first innings of 192, Mumbai scored a commendable 434 in their first essay.
The hosts after an indifferent showing in the first essay, performed better in the second innings, finishing the day on 250 for three, thereby enjoying a slender eight-run lead with seven wickets in hand.
Good knocks from Naman Ojha (85, 83 balls, 9x4, 4x6), Mohnish Mishra (61 batting) and Udit Birla (55, 9x4) might have come a wee bit late in the match.
With only a day's play left, MP either need a miracle from their batsmen or hara-kiri by Wasim Jaffer and his team to have any other result than Mumbai's safe passage to the last four.
Starting the day on 346 for seven, Mumbai lost Kaustubh Pawar (161) for the addition of only seven runs. Pawar could only add a run to his overnight score before becoming Ishwar Pandey's first victim.
However, Ankit Chavan (102 no) showed loads of determination as he added 68 runs for the final wicket with Balwinder Singh Sandhu (24) as the lead swelled above 200.
Chavan's maiden first-class century was studded with nine fours and a six.
With nothing to lose, Ojha batted in his customary fashion, punishing the bowlers with utter disdain. The India discard was particularly severe on off-spinner Ramesh Powar, hitting him for three consecutive sixes in one over.
The other six was hit off Sandhu's bowling. He added 121 runs in only 30.3 overs before he was snapped by skipper Jaffer off Chavan's bowling. Zafar Ali (33) was taken Omkar Gurav off Powar's bowling.
Mishra, however, played a stodgy knock and added 95 runs with Birla, who was taken by 'keeper Gurav off Surya Yadav's bowling.
Brief Scores: Madhya Pradesh 192 & 250-3 v Mumbai 434 (K Pawar 161, A Chavan 102, Sudhindra 5-96).
Tamil Nadu take 183-run lead over Maharashtra
Tamil Nadu are all set to make the semi-finals after consolidating their position in the quarter-final match against Maharashtra in Chennai.
Replying to Maharastra's 232 all out, Tamil Nadu put up 415 to take a handsome 183-run lead.
At stumps on day three, Maharashtra were 90 without loss, but still trailing by 93 runs and the best result they can get of out the contest is a draw.
Openers Harshad Khadiwale (31) and Chirag Khurana (55) were at the crease at close.
A draw will send Tamil Nadu into the semi-finals on the basis of first innings lead.
Earlier, resuming at 259 for three, Tamil Nadu's batsmen fell prey to medium pacers Samad Fallah and Darekar as the duo shared six wickets between them.
The hosts crossed the 400-run mark thanks to Yo Mahesh's enterprising 59-run knock off 111 balls, which included 10 fours.
He added 51 runs for the ninth wicket with J Kaushik (7).
Brief Scores: Maharashtra 232 & 90-0 vs Tamil Nadu 415 (A Mukund 95, M Vijay 79; S Fallah 3-80, A Darekar 3-126).