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Mumbai in sight of first innings lead

Last updated on: November 03, 2010 21:10 IST

Saurashtra ended day three of their Ranji Trophy Super League Group A match against Mumbai on 364 for 7.

Beginning the day on 94 for two, the visitors were still 216 runs adrift of the defending champions' first innings total.

Pratik Mehta was the star of the show for Saurashtra with an unbeaten hundred.

He also shared a 152-run seventh wicket stand with Rakesh Dhruv (49), which helped his side recover from a precarious 190 for five.

However, Dhruv's dismissal in the day's final over meant the hosts go into the concluding day's play with the upper hand.

Ramesh Powar was the star with the ball for Mumbai, with figures off five for 109 on a wicket that offered little help to the bowlers.

Brief Scores:

Mumbai: 580/9 decl.
Saurashtra
: 364/7 (Pratik 100 n.o. Bhushan 63; R Powar 5-109) 

Bengal on top despite Kohli's 173

Virat Kohli made a mockery of Bengal bowling with a brilliant 173 before the visitors led by Ashok Dinda made a comeback to restrict Delhi to 328 for six in reply to Bengal's first innings score of 473 in a Group A Super League match of the Ranji Trophy.

The match is slightly tilted towards Bengal with Delhi needing 146 runs while Manoj Tiwary's men needing four wicket taking deliveries in order to get the first innings lead.

A lot will depend on how the pair of Rajat Bhatia (24 n.o.) and Sumit Narwal (13 n.o.) bat on the final day at the Feroz Shah Kotla.

The pair batted for 79 minutes after Delhi slumped from 261 for two to 295 for six as they lost four wickets with addition of 44 runs in a space of 12 overs.

It was Virat on whose shoulders Delhi's chase depended and the former India U-19 captain responded beautifully. A double hundred was there for the taking before a direct throw from Arindam Das found him a couple of feet short of his ground.

Kohli struck 24 boundaries and a six in his 267-ball knock.

The dismissal brought Bengal right back in the match as Ranadeb Bose and Dinda then quickly got rid of Mithun Manhas (43), Gaurav Chhabra (14) and Puneet Bisht (9), who was brilliantly caught at forward short leg by debutant Abhishek Chowdhury.

Earlier, starting alongside Shikhar Dhawan (42), Kohli showed positive intent right from the start. Rather than trying to see off the Bengal pacers in the first session, he punished loose deliveries from both Bose (1/92) and Dinda (3/87).

While Dinda put in a more disciplined effort Bose was guilty of spraying the deliveries on both sides of the wicket, which Virat took full advantage.

If he looked comfortable against the pacers, his footwork against the spin duo of Sourashis Lahiri (0/38) and Iresh Saxena (0/44) was equally delightful.

On a pitch where the ball was keeping low at times, Kohli did not remain rooted to his crease negating any low bounce or turn that the spinners would have got. The six off Lahiri over long on was a treat to watch.

The only time he looked like getting out was on 74 when he flicked Bose uppishly and Saxena stationed at mid-wicket dropped a sitter.

That proved costly as Virat did not give a single chance after that.

He got his hundred with successive boundaries off Bose. First a flashy cut shot through the third-man region and then driving Bose on the up to bring up his sixth century in first-class cricket.

Brief Scores: Bengal 1st Innings 473. Delhi 1st Innings 328/6 (Virat Kohli 173, M Manhas 43, A Dinda 3/87)

UP holds edge over Punjab
Meerut:  Punjab managed to take a 53-run lead after dismissing Uttar Pradesh for 362 in their second innings but the hosts still had the edge on the third and penultimate day of their elite group B Ranji Trophy match at the Bhamashah Stadium.

Overnight 221 for five, Uttar Pradesh folded for 362 with skipper Mohammad Kaif top-scoring with a patient 176-ball 58.

Praveen Kumar's 62-ball 43, including a couple of fours and three sixes, was the other useful contribution down the order which propped up Uttar Pradesh's score.

In reply, Punjab were 127 for four in their second innings, wiping out the first innings deficit to take a 53-run lead at the draw of stumps.

But it is Uttar Pradesh, which has a chance of forcing a result in the match as the home team has already sent Punjab's top-order back to the pavilion. Wicketkeeper Uday Kaul (47) and Pankaj Dharmani (34) were holding fort for the visiting side, which would look to bat through the day on Thursday.

Punjab, in fact, were in a precarious position after Sarun Kanwar (1), Ravi Inder Singh (5), Karan Goel (10) and Yuvraj Singh (24) fell early in the innings.

But Kaul and Dharmani steadied the ship and the onus now rests on the duo to steer Punjab to safety.

While Kaul had struck nine fours in his 100-ball knock so far, Dharmani managed six boundaries in the 91 balls that he has faced.

Earlier, Uttar Pradesh's lower order put up a gutsy show with Praveen leading the charge. The spunky pacer combined with other lower order batsmen to frustrate Punjab's bowlers.

Brief score:
Uttar Pradesh: 362
Punjab: 288 and 127 for four in 46 overs (Uday Kaul 47 n.o., Pankaj Dharmani 34 n.o., Bhuvneshwar Kumar 2/20).

Rajasthan beat Hyderabad by innings & 256 runs

The miracle that Hyderabad was hoping for did not happen. They crashed to a humiliating innings and 256 runs defeat against Rajasthan on the third day and penultimate day of their Ranji Trophy Plate League (Group A) match in Jaipur on Wednesday.

Trailing by 318 runs overnight -- at a precarious 63 for six -- Hyderabad's second innings folded for 126, giving Rajasthan the massive victory.

Hyderabad had registered the lowest total in Ranji history after being dismissed for 21 in the first innings. Rajasthan then went on to make merry, scoring 403 on the same track.

Debutant pacer Deepak Chahar, who snapped 11 wickets in the match till Tuesday, Day 2, added another one to his kitty on Day 3 by trapping tailender A Lalith Mohan (4) in front of the wickets.

For Hyderabad, it was a hasty end to what was a nightmarish match.

Syed Qadri (27) and Praneet Arjun (33) shared a 40-run stand to give some respectability to Hyderabad's second innings scorecard but the late effort was not enough to save them the humiliation.

Once Quadri departed, caught by Vineet Saxena off Pankaj Singh's bowling, Hyderabad's innings folded in no time with the next three wickets falling for just 32 runs.

Rajasthan's bowling was all about the sensational pace duo of Chahar and Pankaj. Both of them picked four wickets apiece in the second innings.

The win gave Rajasthan six points -- five regulation and a bonus point for the innings win.

Brief scores:

Rajasthan: 403
Hyderabad: 21 and 126 all out in 39 overs (Praneet Arjun 33, Deepak Chahar 4/54, Pankaj Singh 4/45.

Orissa in sight of innings win

Baroda, 82 for 1 in their second essay, will be looking to avoid an innings defeat when they take the field on Thursday, as they still trail Orissa by 122 runs at the end of third day's play in the Ranji Trophy Super League Group B match, in Cuttack.

Replying to Baroda's 148, Orissa added 170 runs to their overnight score on Wednesday and were ultimately all out for 352. The home team was assured three points for the home team with a first innings lead of 204 runs.

But with a full day in hand and Baroda still needing 122 runs with nine wickets in hand to catch their opponent's score in the first essay, Orissa will undoubtedly be eyeing an innings defeat.

Opener Conor Wuilliams (27 not out) and Ajitesh Argal (4 not out) were at the crease when stumps were drawn. Jaykishan Koslawala was the only Baroda wicket to fall in the second innings, caught by Pooder of Basanth Mohanty after making a well-made 46.

Earlier, Orissa middle-order batsman Govind Pooder added 36 runs to his overnight score to notch his maiden first class century before he was bowled by Mutuza Vahora.

Biplab Samamtray (55), Rakesh Mohanty (43), Alok Chandra Sahoo (30) and Basanth Mohanty (21) also made useful contributions with the bat to propel Orisaa past the 350-mark.

Vahora turned out to be the chief destroyer on Day 3, scalping three wickets for 71 runs. He was ably supported by Argal (3/91) while Yusuf Pathan (2/55) also chipped in with useful contributions with the ball.

Brief scores:

Baroda (1st innings): 148 all out
Orissa (1st innings): (Overnight 182 for 3) 352 all out (Govind Pooder 106, Biplab Samatray 55, Nataraj Behera 55; Mutuza Vahora 3/71, Ajitesh Argal 3/91).

Railways face uphill task against Gujarat

Railways were staring defeat on home turf after a first innings batting collapse forced them to follow-on in reply to Gujarat's 379 all out on the third and penultimate day of their Ranji Trophy Super League Group A match in Delhi, on Wednesday.

Yere Goud's unbeaten 197-ball 50, inclusive of five fours, and Jai P Yadav's 58-ball 39 (5x4 and 1x6) were the only notable contributions in the Railways' first innings scorecard of 221 after Siddharth Trivedi, Ishwar Choudhary and Salil Yadav picked three wickets apiece.

Following-on, Railways were 54 for one in their second innings and still trailing Gujarat by 104 runs.

V Cheluvaraj (29) and Sanjay Bangar (19) were at the crease for the hosts at the Karnail Singh Stadium here after opener Faiz Fazal (5) departed early.

Earlier, in the first innings, Railways, resuming at the overnight score of 64 for 3, found themselves at 114 for five with TP Singh (36) being the only top-order batsman to make a notable contribution to the total.

Goud held one end after Singh's departure but ran out of partners.

M Suresh (18) and Yadav (39) gave him company for a while but none in the lower-order could lend him the needed support.

Brief scores:
Gujarat: 379 all out
Railways: 221 and 54 for one in 34 overs (V Cheluvaraj 29).

Haryana tighten noose around Himachal

Haryana tightened the noose around Himachal Pradesh as they first restricted the hosts to 206 in their first innings and then scored 132 for two in their second innings to take an overall lead of 242 runs on

the penultimate day of their Ranji Trophy Super League Group B match at HPCA stadium in Dharamsala on Wednesday.

Haryana, who had scored 316 in their first innings, started confidently in their second, with openers Nitin Saini (61 not out) and Rahul Dewan (19) adding 45 runs for the first wicket.

Himachal's Vishal Bhatia broke the stand, having Dewan caught by Sangram Singh. Sunny Singh (29) and Saini mixed caution with aggression to take the visitors total past the hundred mark.

Their 58-run stand was broken by Ashok Thakur, who trapped Sunny on the backfoot plumb in front of the stumps with the score reading 103.

Sunny hit four fours in his 53 balls stay at the crease.

Next batsman Manav Sharma (10 not out) then joined hands with opener Saini and ensured that the hosts did not get another reason to smile.

Saini has so far struck 10 fours in his unbeaten 123 balls stay at the crease.

Earlier, resuming at their overnight total of 85 for two, Himachal was dealt a severe blow when their in-form opener Bhavin Thakkar (69) was dismissed by Sanjay Budhwar with 101 on the board.

Thakkar managed to add only eight runs to his overnight score. He struck 13 fours in his 152 balls stay at the crease.

Wicketkeeper Manvinder Bisla (8) and overnight batsman and captain Paras Dogra (21) too did not last long as the hosts were left reeling at 129 for five.

Mukesh Sharma (18) also perished in quick succession, caught by Sandeep Singh off Sunny Singh.

Kuldeep Diwan (30) and Vishal Bhatia (22) then stitched together a 58-run seventh wicket partnership to take the total near 200-run mark.

Haryana's in-form pacers Budhwar and Joginder came back strongly in their second spell, dismissing both Dewan and Bhatia quickly.

Ashok Thakur (not out 7) and Jitender Mehta (1) took the total past 200-mark before Himachal's first innings folded up at 206.

For Haryana, Budhwar scalped five wickets for 75 runs in his 24 overs, while Joginder accounted for three in his 22.4 overs, conceding only 36 runs.

Brief scores:

Haryana: 316 and 132/2 (Nitin Saini 61, Vishal Bhatia 1/23)
Himachal Pradesh (1st innings): 206 (Bhavin Thakkar 69, Kuldeep Diwan 30, Sanjay Budhwar 5/25, Joginder Sharma 3/36).

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