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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Ranji: Kanitkar, Saxena put Rajasthan on top

Ranji: Kanitkar, Saxena put Rajasthan on top

December 25, 2010 18:57 IST

Opener Vineet Saxena hit a smashing century as Rajasthan finished second day's play at 236 for one in the Ranji Trophy quarter-final match against Mumbai in Jaipur.

Saxena, who cracked his nineth century, added 206 runs for the undefeated second wicket stand with skipper Hrishikesh Kanitkar to put Rajasthan in a comfortable position.

With only dismissal of the day being veteran opener Aakash Chopra (17), Saxena (111 batting) and Kanitkar (96 batting) made the opposition bowlers toil throughout the day.

With only 18 runs to required to take the all-important first-innings lead, Kanitkar and Co. will be gunning for a huge lead in order to bat the defending champions out of the title race.

Although the duo scored runs at a pretty slow pace but that was of little relevance in the end as they eliminated the risk factor by not going for fancy shots. Only when they were provided with loose deliveries, they made full use of it.

Mumbai started the day with former India pacer Ajit Agarkar getting Chopra out in the 11th over of the innings. However after that breakthrough, the next six hours and 20 minutes proved to be frustrating for the Mumbai bowlers.

While none of the Mumbai bowlers went for too many runs but they also failed to take wickets. None of the seniors bowlers could bowl an incisive spell.

While Agarkar went for 57 runs in his 22 overs, Aavishkar Salvi and debutant Aaquib Sheikh gave away 34 and 42 runs respectively. Salvi bowled 20 overs and Shiekh bowled 14.

Even offie Ramesh Powar and left-arm spinner Iqbal Abdulla sent down 13 and 10 overs respectively without much success.

Karnataka sniff Ranji semi-final berth
Indore: Karnataka strengthened its chances of making it to semifinals of the the Ranji Trophy by taking a healthy first innings lead against Madhya Pradesh as its batsmen complemented the good work done by bowlers on the first day.

Replying to Madhya Pradeesh's 200 all out, Karnataka were 306 for eight at stumps on day two with a lead of 106 runs.

Wicketkeeper-batsman CM Gautham (29 batting) and Abhimanyu Mithun were at the crease at stumps on second day.

Resuming at 35 for no loss, most of the Karnataka batsmen save southpaw Amit Verma were able to cash in on the starts they got.

Verma was the top scorer with 85, laced with 14 boundaries while Robin Uthappa (44), KB Pawan (49) and Manish Pandey (49) were all dismissed after getting well-set.

Uthappa and Pawan began the proceedings and took the score to 66 before the former India opener played a flashy drive to be caught by Ankit Sharma at point off Anand Rajan.

The hosts soon dealt the second blow to Karnataka when Rajan got into act again and shattered the stumps of Ganesh Satish with an inswinger.

Pawan departed at the stroke of lunch while trying to get his 50th run. Pandey and Amit then steadied the ship.

Amit then shared two more crucial partnerships with Stuary Binny (38) and Gautham to help his side take a handy first innings lead.

Off-spinner Jalaj Saxena (3/31) was the most successful bowler while Rajan claimed two for the hosts.

Brief scores:
Madhya Pradesh 1st innings: 200
Karnataka 1st innings: 306 for 8 in 104 overs (Amit Verma 85, KB Pawan 49; J Saxena 3/31, A Rajan 2/52).

Devdhar's unbeaten ton put Baroda in command
Vadodara: Kedar Devdhar's struck his maiden first class century to put Baroda in a commanding position against Railways at the end of second day's play in the Ranji Trophy Super League quarter-final match.

At stumps, Devdhar was unbeaten on 122 as Baroda ended the day's proceedings at 303 for four -- a 55-run first innings lead in reply to Railways 248.

Apart from Devdhar, hard-hitter Yusuf Pathan scored a quickfire 68 while Ambatti Rayudu too made a breezy 41.

Rakesh Solanki (18) was giving Devdhar company at the crease when stumps were drawn at the Moti Bagh stadium.

Sanjay Bangar (2/38) was the pick of the bowlers for Railways, while Anureet Singh and Karan Sharma picked up a wicket each.

Earlier resuming at 241 for eight, Railways could add only seven runs to their overnight score as Baroda bundled the visitors out for 248 in 5.5 overs in the morning session.

In reply, Baroda lost both the openers Connor Williams and Jaykishan Kolsawala within 70 runs before Devdhar and Pathan joined hands to bring the home team back on track with a 110-ball 115-run stand.

As usual Pathan was the aggressor as he faced just 51 deliveries en route his 68, which was studded with six boundaries and four sixes, before falling to Bangar.

To add to Railways' misery, Devdhar and Rayudu then joined forces to continue Baroda's march with a 72-ball 79 partnership before the latter fell leg-before-wicket to Sharma.

Rayudu decorated his 34-ball breezy innings with seven fours and a six while Devdhar remained unconquered with 16 boundaries and a lone hit over the fence.

Brief scores:
Railways 1st Innings: 248 all out in 95.5 overs (Murali Kartik 57, Yere Goud 46; Munaf Patel 4/88 runs)
Baroda 1st Innings: 303 for 4 in 83 overs (Kedar Devdhar 122 not out, Yusuf Pathan 68; Sanjay Bangar 2/38).

TN bowlers strike back as Haryana reach 379/6
Rohtak: Tamil Nadu bowlers gave a better account of themselves pegging back Haryana to 379 for six on a fog-hit second day of their Ranji Trophy quarter-final match being played at the Bansi Lal Cricket Stadium.

Only 26 overs of play was possible on the second day as match started after tea. The Tamil Nadu bowlers showed a lot fo discipline as they got four Haryana wickets with the addition of only 86 runs from their overnight score of 293 for two.

It was L Balaji (2/92) who provided the first breakthrough of the day removing centurion Nitin Saini. Saini who scored a career-best 150 was caught by Rajagopal Sathish.

Another overnight not-out batsmen Ankit Rawat (20) was then trapped leg before by Sunil Sam (two for 56) as Haryana slumped to 324 for four from 319 for two.

Haryana's outstation pro Hemang Badani played fluently against his home state as he hit a quickfire 31 with the help of five boundaries but his innings was cut short when Ravichandran Ashwin (2/76) trapped him leg before.

Joginder Sharma (5) didn't last long as Balaji got his second victim caught by K Vasudevdas.

Skipper Amit Mishra (15 batting) and Dhruv Singh (5 batting) batted together for the last 20 minutes to prevent any further damage.

With only all-rounder Sachin Rana left among the ones who can bat, Haryana will look to score around 450 in order to pose a tough challenge for the in-form Tamil Nadu batsmen like S Badrinath, Abhinav Mukund, Vasudevdas. With bulk of the second day's play being ruled out due to fog, it's unlikely that this match will have an outright result.

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