Ranji Trophy: Birla scion Aryaman hits maiden first-class ton, MP salvage draw against Bengal
Left-handed opener Aryaman Birla slammed his maiden first-class century to help Madhya Pradesh salvage a draw following on, as Bengal had to settle for three points in their first Ranji Trophy home match of the season, in Kolkata, on Thursday.
Scion of the Birla family, Aryaman remained unbeaten on 103 in his third first-class match, while Shubham Sharma gave him fine support with 100 not out on the fourth day to hand Madhya Pradesh one point in their Ranji Trophy Elite Group B fixture.
Bengal, who enjoyed a first innings lead in their last match in Himachal Pradesh, have now six points from two games.
Having taken a first innings lead over Tamil Nadu in their last match, Madhya Pradesh now have four points.
Reeling at 69 for three in their second innings after being asked to follow-on, the 21-year-old opener showed fine application with Sharma as the duo managed the rescue act in an unbroken 171-run partnership for the fourth wicket.
Son of business tycoon Kumar Mangalam Birla, Aryaman hit 12 boundaries and one six during his 189-balls, unbeaten innings, while Sharma was a bit more aggressive in his 134-ball knock that included 11 fours and one hit over the fence.
With little assistance from the wicket, Bengal, who were playing with four bowlers, suffered further setbacks as they sorely missed their frontline pace duo of Ashok Dinda (swollen knee) and Ishan Porel (blisters) for most part of the second innings.
Pace spearhead Dinda could bowl only one over and had to leave the field, while Porel bowled seven overs, leaving Bengal with a big task to bowl Madhya Pradesh out twice.
Earlier, starting at the overnight score of 254 for five in their first innings, Madhya Pradesh were bowled out with addition of just 81 runs in the first hour's play, conceding a 175-run lead.
Dinda returned with four for 78, while part-timer Anustup Majumdar bagged three for 38.
Majumdar further dismissed skipper Naman Ojha in the second innings en route to his two for 60 as Madhya Pradesh were in trouble at 69 for three inside 27 overs.
But Sharma joined forces with Aryaman to deny Bengal any more success.
Bengal: 510 for 9 declared vs Madhya Pradesh 335 in 105.5 overs (Naman Ojha 74, Rajat Patidar 49, Shubham Sharma 45; Ashok Dinda 4/78, Anustup Majumdar 3/38) and 240 for 3 in 68.2 overs (Aryaman Birla 103 not out, Shubham Sharma 100; Majumdar 3/60). Match drawn. Points: Bengal 3, Madhya Pradesh 1.
Jackson, Jadeja star in Saurashtra's win over Railways
Sheldon Jackson hit a strokeful half century while Ravindra Jadeja made a crucial unbeaten 48 to guide hosts Saurashtra to a three-wicket win over Railways in a Group A Ranji Trophy match in Rajkot.
Saurashtra lost seven wickets while chasing 184 for an outright win, but Ravindra Jadeja (48 not out) held his nervous along with Kamlesh Makwana (14 not out) to take their side to a victory at the Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium.
Jackson's 55-ball 54, which had eight fours and two sixes proved to be the difference among the two sides.
Saurashtra were four wickets down for 65 at one stage, but then Jackson and Jadeja pulled the team out of trouble.
Jadeja, who reamined unbeaten on 178 in the first innings, carried on his form and responded to his team's call.
Earlier, Saurashtra bowlers did a descent job to bundle out Railways for 331 in their second innings and ensure that the target remained below 200.
Dharmendrasinh Jadeje (5/95) turned out to be the stand out bowler for Saurashtra.
For Railways, Harsh Tyagi scored a valint 93 but his efforts went in vein.
The win gave Saurashtra full six points.
At Rajkot: Railways 200 and 331 (Harsh Tyagi 93) vs Saurashtra 348 all out and 186/7 (Sheldon Jackson 54, Ravindra Jadeja 48 not out); Saurashtra won by three wickets. Saurasthra 6 points.
At Vadodara: Baroda 322 and 410/5 declared (Vishnu Solanki 175) vs Maharashtra 268 and 217/2 (Ruturaj Gaikwad 118 not out). Match drawn. Baroda 3 points, Maharasthra 1 point.
At Valsad: Gujarat 538/7 declared and 167/5 (Manprit Juneja 50 not out) vs Chhattisgarh 420 (Vishal Kushwah 159). Match drawn. Gujarat 3 points, Chhattishgarh 1 point.
At Nagpur: Vidarbha 307 and 228 vs Karnataka 378 and 76/6. Match drawn. Karnataka 3 points, Vidarbha 1 point.
Rajasthan, UP, Assam notch up wins
Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Assam registered wins in their respective Elite Group C Ranji Trophy matches played across different venues in the country.
While Uttar Pradesh thrashed hosts Odisha by 10 wickets in Bhubaneswar, Assam defeated Tripura by a massive 211 runs in Agartala.
On the other hand, Rajasthan hammered Services by five wickets at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur, chasing a stiff 357-run target.
Rajasthan rode on a magnificent 159 by their opener Amitkumar Gautam, who struck 13 fours and six other hits over the fence.
Opener Gautam, who had fallen cheaply in the first innings, and his partner Chetan Bist (78) laid the foundation of the win with their 170-run stand for the first wicket.
23-year-old Gautam, a right-handed batsman, scored runs when his team needed the most. He hammered a listless Services attack as their bowlers leaked runs.
When Gautam fell, the job was nearly done as Rajasthan needed just another 25 runs. Then R K Bishnoi (26 not out) and T N Dhillon (10 not out) took their side home with five wickets to spare as Rajasthan earned six points from the game.
At Jaipur: Services 228 and 264 against Rajasthan 136 and 357/5 (A V Gautam 159, Chetan Bist 78).
Rajasthan won by five wickets.
At Bhubaneswar: Odisha 256 and 221 (Sandeep Pattnaik 46, Shivam Mavi 5-68) versus Uttar Pradesh 437 and 44/0 (Madhav Kaushik 22 not out). Uttar Pradesh won by 10 wickets.
At Agartala: Assam 327 and 239/6 Declared (Riyan
Parag 80) versus Tripura 139 and 216 (Harmeet Singh 33, Mukhtar Hussain 5-73). Assam won by 211 runs.
At Porvorim: Goa 468/9 Declared versus Jammu and Kashmir 271 and 242/5 (Ian Chauhan 113 not out). Match Drawn. Goa take first innings lead.
Spinners disappoint as Delhi fail to register outright win vs HP
Delhi's left-arm spin duo Vikas Mishra and Varun Sood put up a disappointing show on a helpful last day track as Himachal Pradesh managed to eke out a point in a Ranji Trophy group B encounter in New Delhi.
Needing nine wickets on the final day and Himachal left with an improbable chase of 376, Mishra (2/57 in 33 overs) and Sood (1/51 in 21 overs) failed to break through the opposition middle-order.
HP finished their second innings at 266 for 5, primarily due to Nikhil Gangta (66 no, 184 balls) and Rishi Dhawan (52 no, 110 balls). Sumeet Verma (43, 91 balls) also played his part to perfection as Delhi bowlers sans Ishant Sharma (2/42 in 16 overs) looked below-par.
Ishant, who is gearing up for the Test series in Australia, bowled with real fire but was unlucky as the edges that flew of batsmen's willow didn't carry to wicketkeeper Anuj Rawat and slip fielders.
Only when the India international was bowling, it looked as if something might happen.
The pitch played better than the second day but there was some turn on offer for the Delhi bowlers but negative line employed by both Mishra and Sood after lunch session became their undoing.
Most of the deliveries bowled by Mishra to the right-handers pitched outside the leg-stump, thereby negating any chance of a leg-before decision.
Sood, on the other hand, lacked imagination and bowled straight making it easy for Gangta and Dhawan to defend. At one point of time, they deployed defensive fields with a long on and a deep mid-wicket, making it easy for the batsmen.
Delhi bowled close to 30 overs (29.4 overs) after Himachal lost their fifth wicket at 184 but the two spinners let it drift during the unbroken 82-run stand for the sixth wicket between Gangta and Dhawan.
Once it was tea, senior pros Gautam Gambhir and Ishant didn't take field in the final session as the match had become inconsequential by then.
Delhi 317 and 281/4 decl. HP 223 and 266/5 (Nikhil Gangta 66 no, Rishi Dhawan 52 no, Ishant Sharma 2/42). Points: Delhi 3; HP 1.