Ranji Trophy round-up: Unadkat fires Saurashtra to semis; Iyer puts Mumbai on the brink of final four - Firstpost
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Ranji Trophy round-up: Unadkat fires Saurashtra to semis; Iyer puts Mumbai on the brink of final four

Mumbai inch closer towards outright win against Jharkhand

Mysuru: Heavyweights Mumbai took another step closer towards an outright victory against Jharkhand on their way to the semi-finals of the Ranji Trophy cricket tournament on Friday.

Having set a near impossible victory target of 490 on a track that is offering help for spinners, Jharkhand are 28 for one with two full days of play left and 462 runs to get.

Earlier, talented Shreyas Iyer's quickfire 81 off 106 balls and captain Abhishek Nayar's 43 off 77 balls enabled Mumbai score 245 in a little over 63 overs in their second innings after Jharkhand were bowled out for 172 in their first essay.

File image of Shreyas Iyer. BCCI

File image of Shreyas Iyer. BCCI

Despite a handy 244 run lead, nayar did not enforce follow-on as his bowlers had sent down 71.5 overs and there was more than two and half days time at his disposal.

Starting the day at 150 for 8, Shardul Thakur took the remaining two wickets in the morning as Jharkhand were bowled out within 8.5 overs in the day.

In their bid to score quick runs, Jay Bista (14) and Akhil Herwadkar (15) hit a flurry of boundaries before both were out in quick succession.

But Iyer with nine fours and two sixes added 63 runs in only 13.5 overs with Nayar as Mumbai consolidated their position in the match.

Brief Scores:

Mumbai 416 & 2nd Innings 245 in 63.1 overs (Shreyas Iyer 81, Abhishek Nayar 43, Samar Quadri 5/62)
Jharkhand 1st Innings 172 (Kaushal Singh 43, Akhil Herwadkar 3/26, Iqbal Abdullah 3/50, Shardul Thakur 3/37) & 2nd Innings (Target 490) 28/1.

Assam two wickets away from semifinal spot at Ranji Trophy

Valsad: Seamer Arup Das scalped six wickets to take Assam closer to a semi-final spot by reducing Punjab to 224-8 in their second innings at stumps on the third day of their Ranji Trophy quarterfinal match on Friday.

Arup's 6 for 82 wrecked havoc on Punjab, who need another 64 runs with two wickets in hand, chasing 288 to win at the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium.

File image of Assam Ranji team from the group stages. PTI

File image of Assam Ranji team from the group stages. PTI

Resuming their second innings at 23 for 4, Assam collapsed to 101 with Arup's 31-run cameo being their highest individual score. He had three fours and two sixes in his 18-ball innings.

Arup polished Punjab's top order, dismssing openers -- Jiwanjot Singh (9) and Pargat Singh (16) -- and No. 3 batsman Uday Kaul (0) to leave the side struggling at 26 for 3 in 9.3 overs.

Gurkeerat Singh (64) and Mandeep Singh (29) stitched a 70-run partnership for the fourth wicket but both batsmen were removed by pacer Dheeraj Goswami.

While Gurkeerat was caught by Gokul Skarma after he blasted 12 fours and two sixes in his 55-ball innings, while Mandeep was caught by PP Das. His innings was laced with four hits to the fence.

The 24-year-old from Barpeta then returned to get rid of the lower order batsmen -- Mayank Sidhana (43), Harbhajan Singh (8) and Siddarth Kaul (10).

At the draw of stumps, Gitansh Khera (35) and Barinder Sran (8) were at the crease.

Earlier, pacers Barinder Sran (5 for 43) and Siddarth Kaul (4 for 25) shared nine Assam wickets, while left-arm pacer Deepak Bansal snapped one wicket.

Assam, who had a first-innings lead of 186, resumed their third day at a shaky 23 for 4 and were soon tottering at 53 for 8. It was Arup who took his team past the 100-run mark, eventually setting Punjab a target of 288.

Brief Score:
Punjab: 137 and 224 for 8 in 60 overs (Gurkeerat Singh 64, M Sidhana 43, Arup Das 6/82)
Assam: 323 and 101 in 35.5 overs (Arup 31, Sran 5/43, Kaul 4/25).

Unadkat steers Saurashtra to Ranji Trophy semis

Vizianagaram: Left-arm seamer Jaydev Unadkat took four wickets in the second innings to take his match tally to nine for 116 as Saurashtra thrashed Vidarbha by an innings and 85 runs and book their place in the Ranji Trophy semifinal for the first time in three seasons.

Unadkat's nine-wicket haul helped Saurashtra wrap up a one-sided contest inside three days.

File image of Jaydev Unadkat. IPL

File image of Jaydev Unadkat. IPL

After bowling out Vidarbha for 151 in their first innings, Saurashtra had scored 375 in their opening essay to take a massive 224-run lead.

Vidarbha today resumed on 17 without loss in their second innings, but lost nine wickets for an addition of just 122 runs.

Umesh Yadav, who had picked up five wickets in the first innings, was absent hurt after injuring his ankle on the field yesterday. And thus, he could not come out to bat.

Vidarbha were bowled out for a mere 139 shortly after tea on day three with Unadkat (4/35) and medium pacer Deepak Punia (3/32) doing the maximum damage.

Kamlesh Makvana (1/12) and Chirag Jani (1/21) took wicket apiece.

Vidarbha failed to find the rhythm and lost wickets in clumps with the highest partnership of the innings being the 44-run fifth-wicket stand between Ravi Jangid (10) and Wasim Jaffer, who top scored with 48.

Opener Faiz Fazal was the only other batsman who chipped in with an useful 36.

In fact, only four Vidarbha batsmen could manage to reach the double-digit mark.

Brief scores:

Saurashtra: 375 (Jogiyani 130, Jackson 122, Yadav 5-81)
Vidarbha: 151 & 139 all out in 68.1 overs (Wasim Jaffer 48, Jaydev Unadkat 4/35, Deepak Punia 3/32).

Youngster Patidar cracks ton as MP step closer towards semis

Mumbai: Youngster Rajat Patidar showed character to crack his third first-class century as Madhya Pradesh tightened their grip on Bengal at the end of the third day of the Ranji Trophy quarter final at the Brabourne Stadium on Friday.

Patidar, who scored an impressive 137 off 251 balls laced with 19 fours and a six, was thus largely responsible for MP's end-of-day second innings score of 338 for 5, that gave them an imposing overall lead of 565 with two more days left in the game.

The 22-year-old one-down batsman, is playing only his 5th first-class game of his fledgling career, was unruffled even as MP lost their openers this morning with only 43 on board.

Patidar, who came into the game after hitting tons against Baroda and Railways in the league phase, got involved in two century stands, for the third and fourth wickets, with senior partners Naman Ojha (52)and captain Devendra Bundela (72), who both completed their second individual fifties in the match.

Unless a miracle happens, MP should sail through to the semi finals with an outright win after being denied such a distinction narrowly last season when Bengal escaped with two wickets still standing after following on.

After being bowled out for a meagre 121 in the first essay to concede a big 227-run lead to MP, Bengal needed to skittle out their rivals cheaply in the second innings, but Patidar, Naman Ojha and Bundela dashed their hopes.

Bengal got rid of overnight unbeaten openers Jalaj Saxena and Aditya Shrivastava early in the morning after MP resumed at 14 without loss, but then successive partnerships of 141 for the third wicket and 114 for the fourth took the game beyond their reach.

Patidar was finally dismissed by Bengal captain Manoj Tiwary after his frontline bowlers failed to dislodge the youngster.

At stumps, Harpreet Singh Bhatia (18) and Ankit Dane (14) were at the crease.

Brief scores: Madhya Pradesh 348 and 338 for 5 (R Patidar 137, N Ojha 52, D Bundela 72, H S Bhatia 18 not out, A Dane 14 not out). Bengal 121.


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