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Ranji Trophy: Uthappa, Rahul put Karnataka in command

Source: PTI
February 16, 2015 18:17 IST
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Robin Uthappa in action. Photograph: PTI

A brilliant 153 from Robin Uthappa coupled with a patient 91 from KL Rahul has helped the defending champions Karnataka, post a commanding 302-2 in the Ranji Trophy quarter-final match against Assam in Indore.

The 29-year-old Uthappa blasted as many as 21 boundaries and one six en route to his second century this Ranji season, while Rahul, who struck 14 fours during his 154-ball innings.

The duo dominated the Assam bowlers, sharing a 194-run opening stand in 55.1 overs at the Holkar Cricket Stadium.

Ravikumar Samarth (39) and Manish Pandey (18) were at the crease when the stumps were drawn.

Seam bowler Abu Nechim (1/69) and spinner Jamaluddin Syed Mohammad (1/66) took one wicket each.

Earlier, Assam skipper Dheeraj Jadhav's decision to insert the opposition first after winning the toss backfired as his seam bowlers failed to exploit the Indore track, which is known to assist the pacers.

New ball bowlers Arup Das (16-5-49-0) and Krishna Das (17-3-44-0) bowled well initially but after first hour of play the pitch eased out and Uthappa and Rahul started playing more freely.

Assam's off-spinner Swarupam Purkayastha also found the going tough as he returned with figures of 15-4-63-0.

Rahul, who made his maiden Test match hundred against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground last month, dominated the proceeding early on as Uthappa played second fiddle. Rahul had nine boundaries to his name by the time he reached his half century fifty.

But once Rahul was dismissed by a sharp inswinger by Nechim, Uthappa took the onus on himself and did bulk of the scoring after lunch.

Uthappa reached his first fifty off 116 balls with the help of five boundaries, before amassing the next fifty off just 53 balls.

Brief Scores:

Karnataka 302 for 2 (Robin Uthappa 153, KL Rahul 91; Syed Mohammad 1/66)

Half centuries by Vijay, Shankar propel Tamil Nadu

Jaipur: Fine half centuries by India Test opener Murali Vijay (96) and Vijay Shankar (90 n.o.) enabled Tamil Nadu reach 234 for four at the close on the first day in their Ranji Trophy quarter-final clash against Vidarbha at the Sawai Man Singh Stadium in Jaipur.

A 140-run partnership for the fourth wicket between Vijay and Shankar helped Tamil Nadu recover from a shaky start.

At stumps on day one, Shankar was unbeaten on 90 off 215 balls, studded with 11 fours and a six, and giving him company at the other end was R Prasanna on 10.

Earlier, Vidarbha won the toss and put Tamil Nadu in to bat on a wicket which looked to assist the seamers.

The strategy seemed to have worked, as after a delayed start Tamil Nadu lost opener Abhinav Mukund (11) in the fifth over and a little later Baba Aprajit (10) ran himself out when the total was just 41 in the 14th over.

Tamil Nadu were 50 for two at lunch but Vijay was going strong at one end.

Immediately after the break, Tamil Nadu lost Dinesh Karthik (4) but Vijay found a reliable partner in Shankar.

The Indian opener reached his fifty and looked all set for a ton but missed out holing out to Fazal off R D Thakur. His innings came off 203 deliveries, which included 13 fours and two sixes.

Undeterred by Murali's departure, Shankar continued to play his shots and remained unbeaten till the end of the day.

For Vidarbha, Thakur was the most successful bowler picking two for 31, while S B Waugh took one for 40.

Brief scores:

TN: 234 for four in 87 overs (Murali Vijay 96, Vijay Shankar 90 not out; R D Thakur 2/31)


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