A round-up of Ranji Trophy matches played on Tuesday.
Rookie spin all-rounder Shahbaz Ahmed shone with a first-innings hat-trick in a six-wicket match haul as Bengal thrashed a sloppy Hyderabad by an innings and 303 runs for their first win of the ongoing Ranji Trophy season, in Kalyani, West Bengal, on Tuesday.
The 25-year-old, who was bought by Royal Challengers Bangalore for the 2020 edition of the IPL, claimed the feat in his seventh Ranji appearance.
Shahbaz (4/26) ran through the Hyderabad lower order to help his side bundle out the visitors for 171 in their first innings. Following on, Hyderabad were all out for 161 with Shahbaz (2/51) accounting for two batsmen.
Shahbaz became the seventh player from Bengal, and first since India pacer Mohammed Shami, to claim a Ranji Trophy hat-trick. Shami had achieved the milestone against Madhya Pradesh in the 2012-13 season.
Rookie pacer Akash Deep (4/38) was the star in Hyderabad's second essay as they were bundled out in 46.2 overs.
Bengal had scored 635 for seven declared in their first innings after electing to bat.
Having made his debut against Andhra three matches ago after Ashok Dinda was sacked for misconduct, Akash Deep took two wickets in his first two overs before his senior partner Mukesh Kumar (1/29) and Shahbaz got into the act to complete the victory inside three days.
Having lost to Vidarbha inside two days in their last outing, Bengal with this bonus point victory (19 points from five matches) now have bounced back in contention for a knockout berth.
Done in by conditions at Eden Gardens where they drew two matches, Bengal had chosen this venue about 70 kilometres from their base in Kolkata as they finally secured their first win at home this season.
It all went as per the script with senior-most batsman Manoj Tiwary setting up a solid foundation with his maiden triple century (303 not out) in Bengal's massive total.
Then the young pace duo of Mukesh Kumar and Akash Deep set up the tempo taking six wickets, five of them in the final session on day two, making it an easier task for hat-trick man Shahbaz.
Bengal will take on Delhi at Eden Gardens from January 27, which will be their last home match.
"We played immaculate cricket. Wicket didn't turn at all when we expected it to turn. Hats off to our pacers, they bowled with a lot of venom. We won the match yesterday itself by taking five wickets," coach and mentor Arun Lal said.
"Two of our games washed out otherwise we would have been in top of the table. The big plus were Shahbaz (49) and Arnab Nandi (65 not out). They are capable of getting hundreds. This is a sensational team," he said referring to their batting contributions in the first innings.
"If you add Ishan Porel, we would be one of the best bowling attacks of the country. All are young and all are fast. When your bowlers take 20 wickets you get the confidence."
Introduced in the 27th over, Shahbaz opened his account trapping Saketh Sairam (19). Amid the batting collapse, number six Jaweed Ali showed some fight with a fine half-century.
But Shahbaz bowled him out for 72 and went on to trap Ravi Kiran (0) and Kolla Sumanth (eight) with perfect left-arm orthodox spin to dismiss the visitors inside the first session.
Earlier, Mukesh Kumar led the Bengal pace attack beautifully as he gave the first breakthrough in the fourth ball of the day, cleaning up Tanmay Agarwal in his overnight score of 10 after Hyderabad resumed the day on 83/5 in their first innings.
Continuing his marathon overnight spell, Mukesh finished with 3/37, while Akash Deep (3/66) could not add to his tally as it was the hattrick hero Shahbaz who ran through the tail.
Triple centurion Manoj Tiwary stood in as wicket-keeper in the post lunch session, after Shreevats Goswami hurt his knee.
"It's just a niggle. Maybe a couple of days rest and he will be fine," Lal said.
Tiwary looked sharp behind the stumps as he effected the caught-behind dismissal of Teja and also executed run outs of Ali and Mehid Hasan.
Bengal 635/7 declared vs Hyderabad 171; 46.3 overs (Jaweed Ali 72; Shahbaz Ahmed 4/26, Mukesh Kumar 3/37, Akash Deep 3/66) and 161; 46.2 overs (Ravi Teja 53; Akash Deep 4/38).
Bengal won by an innings and 303 runs.
Points: Bengal 7, Hyderabad 0.
Vidarbha to go for kill vs Delhi on final day after Sathish hundred
New Delhi: Ganesh Sathish smashed his 15th first-class hundred as defending champions Vidarbha produced a power-packed batting performance raising visions of an outright victory over a depleted Delhi after the third day's play in the Ranji Trophy group A encounter on Tuesday.
The seasoned campaigner scored an even 100 off 92 balls and added 148 runs for the unbroken fourth wicket stand with Akshay Wadkar (70 off 82 balls) in a little over 24 overs.
Delhi, playing without an injured Ishant Sharma, looked listless on a placid track didn't have the resolve to stop Vidarbha reaching 330 for 3 before setting a target of 347.
Delhi were 10 for no loss at stumps and will have to play out of their skins to get a point from the game.
For the hosts, a poor show in this match will certainly dent their hopes of qualifying among top five teams from the cross-pool (group A and B). On the other hand, Vidarbha's outright win will be a giant stride towards quarter-final.
Ishant's absence had a demoralizing effect on the Delhi attack as Simarjeet Singh (0/68 in 17 overs) suddenly lacked penetration on a track that eased out considerably.
While Faiz Fazal (43 off 68 balls) and Sanjay Raghunath (57 off 153 balls) gave a steady start, Sathish, who hit 11 fours and two sixes got the advantage of facing friendly seam-up stuff from Nitish Rana and part-time off-spin from Lalit Yadav.
Wadkar on his part hit seven fours and the moment Sathish reached his hundred, Vidarbha made a sporting declaration.
In Delhi: Vidarbha 179 and 330/3 decl (Ganesh Sathish 100 not out, Akshay Wadkar 70) vs Delhi 163 and 10/0.
In Kalyani: In Bengal 635/7 decl. vs Hyderabad 171; 46.3 overs (Jaweed Ali 72; Shahbaz Ahmed 4/26, Mukesh Kumar 3/37, Akash Deep 3/66) and 161; 46.2 overs (Ravi Teja 53; Akash Deep 4/38).
Bengal won by an innings and 303 runs. Points: Bengal 7, Hyderabad 0.
In Valsad: Gujarat 281 and 167 vs Punjab 229 and 87/4.
Sarfaraz hits unbeaten ton as Mumbai fight back against UP
Mumbai: Young Sarfaraz Khan hit an unbeaten century as Mumbai fought back on the third day of their Ranji Trophy Elite Group B game against Uttar Pradesh on Tuesday.
UP had posted a mammoth 625/8 declared in their first essay, courtesy Upendra Yadav’s unbeaten double hundred (203 not out).
Mumbai resumed the day on their overnight score of 20/2 and had a mountain to climb.
Thanks to herculean effort by crisis man Siddhesh Lad (98 off 174 balls; 10x4x1x6), who lived up to his billing and 22-year-old Sarfaraz (132 not out off 160 balls; 14x4; 4x6), the duo gave Mumbai the confidence that UPs first-inning score could be overhauled.
Overnight batsmen Bhupen Lalwani (43 off 80 balls; 5x4) and Hardik Tamore (51 off 94 balls; 10x4) had the uphill task of surviving the morning session against the experienced Ankit Rajpoot and Yash Dayal.
They negated the challenge well and stitched a crucial 75-run stand for the third wicket.
Hardik Tamore, playing his second first-class game, hit a flurry of boundaries, as the hosts surged ahead.
However, pacer Wajid Ali gave the visitors the much-needed break-through after he trapped Lalwani in front of the wicket as Mumbai lost their third wicket at 91.
Tamore then notched up his maiden first-class fifty by driving Ali through the covers for a four, but could not convert it into a big score.
Rajpoot broke through Tamore's defence to strike the middle-stump as Mumbai was 4-128, still behind by 497 runs.
Then Lad, who did not have a great season so far, and Sarfaraz joined hands as they conjured crucial 210-run stand for the fifth wicket.
Sarfaraz, who was playing against UP for the first time since returning to Mumbai from UP made the most of the opportunity which had come his way.
Lad and Sarfaraz took the UP bowlers to task and once again rallied the innings.
While Lad played his usual game, Sarfaraz was more aggressive in his approach as they shared an unbroken 115-run stand till tea.
Mumbai went to tea at 243/4, 382 runs behind. After tea, the duo kept frustrating the opposition bowlers and kept the score-board ticking.
Lad got a life on 77 when Wajid dropped a hard chance on his own bowling.
Sarfaraz completed his second first-class hundred off 107 balls with a fluent on-drive off Saurabh Kumar and then he was going all guns blazing.
He hammered consecutive sixes off pacer Wajid Ali as Mumbai reduced the deficit.
Lad, however, missed his ninth first-class hundred, after he was caught by Yadav off slow-left arm bowler Mohammed Saif.
He was dismissed at the fag-end of the day, after batting with Sarfaraz for 215 minutes.
The domestic giants ended the day at 353/5, still adrift by 272 runs with Sarfaraz and Aditya Tare at the crease.
Whether the hosts take first-innings lead or not, will be decided on the final day on Thursday.
Saying that batting position doesn't matter but the runs, Sarfaraz said he plays according to the need of his team.
The right-handed batsman, who has also played in the IPL, insisted that moving to UP was his father's decision and he does not dwell on the past.
Expressing faith in his abilities, Sarfaraz also exuded confidence that Mumbai could overhaul UP's target and take the crucial first-innings lead.
Brief Scores: Uttar Pradesh 625/8 declared vs Mumbai 353/5 (Sarfaraz Khan 132 not out; Siddesh Lad 98; Ankit Rajpoot 3-63) Mumbai trailed by 272 runs.
At Dharamshala: Himachal Pradesh 496 vs Baroda 150/2 (Vishnu Solanki 85 not out; Vaibhav Arora 1-42) vs Baroda trail by 346 runs.
At Indore: Saurashtra 344 and 165/2 (Harvik Desai 65 not out; Cheteshwar Pujara 64 not out; Avesh Khan 1-31) vs Madhya Pradesh 280 (Venkatesh Iyer 75; Yash Dubey 74, Jaydev Unadkat 4-45). Saurashtra lead by 229 runs.
J&K posts win over Odisha in Ranji Trophy
Cuttack: Jammu & Kashmir bounced back superbly after conceding a first innings lead to pull off a four-wicket win over Odisha on the third day of the Ranji Trophy Group C match on Tuesday.
Resuming their second innings at 136 for seven, Odisha could add only 30 runs as Umar Nazir picked up the last three wickets -- Rajesh Mohanty, Suryakant Pradhan and Rajesh Dhuper.
Chasing 204 for a win, J&K opener Suryansh Raina (69) and Shubam Pundir (45) added 79 runs for the third wicket to lay the platform for an easy win.
Abdul Samad, with a knock of 30 not out, and the first-innings bowling hero Aquib Nabi (26 not out) took the side over the finish line.
For the home team, Basant Mohanty bowled his heart out and picked up four wickets in the second innings but could not prevent J&K from romping home.
In Delhi, Services pulled off an exciting one-wicket win over Haryana despite being shot out for 97 in the first innings.
Brief Scores: Odisha 161 all out in 64.3 overs (Shubhranshu Senapati 42; Aquib Nabi 5/39) and 166 all out in 67.3 overs (Shantanu Mishra 26, Anurag Sarangi 26; Umar Nazir 5/72, Auqib Nabi 2/40) lost to J&K 124 all out in 45 overs (Shubham Khajuria 40; Basant Mohanty 4/42) and 205 for 6 in 65.3 overs (Suryansh Raina 69, SS Pundir 45, Abdul Samad 30 not out; DB Pradhan 4/48) by four wickets. J&K: 6 points, Odisha: 0.
At Ranchi: Uttarakhand 227 all out in 53.2 overs (Saurabh Rawat 66, Tanmay Srivastava 49; Ajay Yadav 6/55, Ashish Kumar 4/52) and 273 all out in 72.2 overs (Saurabh Rawat 110; Ashish Kumar 5/61, Shahbaz Nadeem 3/67) vs Jharkhand 298 all out in 87 overs (Kumar Deobrat 85, K Suraj 57; Mayank Mishra 5/100) and 76 for 1 in 21 overs (Kumar Deobrat 33 batting).
At Guwahati: Maharashtra 175 all out in 43.4 overs (Ankit Bawane 75, SS Bachhav 40; Arup Das 4/66, Ranjeet Mali 4/55) and 365 for 9 declared in 111.3 overs (JS Pande 130, VV More 57, SS Bachhav 51 not out; Ranjeet Mali 5/123) vs Assam 244 all out in 78.1 overs (Rishav Das 94; SS Bachhav 4/44) and 12 for no loss in 6 overs.
At Delhi: Haryana 176 and 133 lost to Services 97 all out in 24.5 overs and 215 for 9 in 61.1 overs (G Rahul Singh 115; AK Hooda 3/60, Harshal Patel 3/69). Services: 6 points, Haryana: 0.
Vinay Kumar stars in Puducherry win
Puducherry: Veteran R Vinay Kumar excelled with an all-round display as Puducherry climbed to the top of Plate Group table with a crushing 296-run win over Arunchal Pradesh on Tuesday.
Overnight on 36, number eight batsman Vinay Kumar remained the lone man standing with an unbeaten 81 as Puducherry were bundled out for 351 with Nabam Tempol grabbing 7 for 104.
The out-of-favour India seamer returned to haunt Arunchal Pradesh, grabbing 5 for 25 to bundle them out for 76 and seal a victory inside three days.
Vinay Kumar, who bagged 6/51 in the first innings, returned with a match haul of 11 wickets as Puducherry now have 33 points from six matches.
At Puducherry: Puducherry 209 and 351; 73.4 overs (R Vinay Kumar 81 not out, Paras Dogra 61; Nabam Tempol 7/104) vs Arunachal Pradesh 192 and 72; 26.4 overs (Vinay Kumar 5/25). Puducherry won by 296 runs. Points: Puducherry 6, Arunachal Pradesh 0.
At Bhubaneswar: Mizoram 201 and 179 vs Sikkim 139 and 163; 42.2 overs (Taruwar Kohli 6/52, G Lalbiakvela 3/69). Mizoram won by 78 runs. Points: Mizoram 6, Sikkim 0.
At Povorim: Goa 251 and 87/2; 27 overs (Smit Patel 40) vs Chandigarh 580/7 declared; 92 overs (Shivam Bhambri 157, Bipul Sharma 103 not out, Manan Vohra 102).
At Sovima: Nagaland 166 and 76/2; 21 overs (Shrikant Mundhe 49 batting) vs Bihar 509/7 declared; 123.1 overs (MD Rahmatullah 106, Vikas Ranjan 103 not out, Babul Kumar 95, Shasheem Rathour 81).