Middle order batsman Rajat Bhatia cracked a century as Delhi took a first innings lead of 190 runs over Maharashtra on the third and penultimate day of their Ranji Trophy Elite Division Group A match in Nagothane on Tuesday.
The visitors, who made 409 in reply to Maharashtra's meagre first innings tally of 219, then applied pressure on the home team before close to leave them struggling at 129 for five, still 61 runs short of making Delhi bat again.
The not out batsmen for Maharashtra were youngsters Yogesh Talawale (18), who scored his maiden first class hundred against holders Mumbai in their previous tie, and Vishal Bhilare (11) who got together after the fall of the hosts' fourth wicket, that of skipper Venugopal Rao for 13 at 102.
Hrishikesh Kanitkar, the former captain, made a strokeful 50 before falling to leg spinner Chaitanya Nanda after the loss of the openers Vishant More (27) and Harshad Khadiwale (0).
The left-handed Kanitkar drove and pulled in impressive fashion on way to his second half-century of the match.
Earlier in the morning, Bhatia, not out 66 in Delhi's overnight 278 for 5, duly completed his century. His 107 was studded with two sixes and five fours and he also put on 123 runs for the sixth wicket with Mayank Tehlan (53).
The duo were dismissed by left arm spinner Salil Agharkar who ended up with a five-wicket haul.
Maharashtra (1st innings): 219
Delhi (1st innings, overnight 278/5):
A Chopra lbw b Bahutule 73
S Dhawan c Takawale b Sayyed 7
C Nanda c sub (D Mohan) b Fallah 10
V Sehwag b Fallah 9
M Manhas c More b Agharkar 74
R Bhatia c Venugopal Rao b Agharkar 107
M Tehlan c sub (D Waghmare) b Agharkar 53
P Bisht c More b Fallah 4
N Singh c More b Agharkar 5
P Sangwan not out 18
P Awana lbw b Agharkar 4
Extras: (b 15, lb 12, w 5, nb 13) 45
Total: (all out in 149.5 overs) 409
Fall of wickets: 1-23, 2-61, 3-78, 4-153, 5-244, 6-367, 7-377, 8-384, 9-391, 10-409
Bowling: W Sayyed 27-11-56-1, S Fallah 35-9-106-3, H Khadiwale 15-3-30-0, S Bahutule 17-0-68-1, S Agharkar 37.5-6-85-5, Y Venugopal Rao 18-1-37-0
Maharashtra (2nd innings):
V More b Awana 27
H Khadiwale lbw b Sangwan 0
H Kanitkar st Bisht b Nanda 50
Y Venugopal Rao lbw b Sangwan 13
Y Takawale not out 18
V Bhilare not out 11
Extras: (b 3, lb 3, w 3, nb 1) 10
Total: (4 wickets in 38 overs) 129
Fall of wickets: 1-7, 2-63, 3-98, 4-102
Bowling: P Sangwan 11-2-33-2, P Awana 6-0-35-1, C Nanda 14-1-39-1, R Bhatia 3-2-1-0, V Sehwag 1-0-5-0, N Singh 3-1-10-0