Ace off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin starred with a five-wicket haul to help Tamil Nadu bundle out Himachal Pradesh for 158 in 71.4 overs on the opening day of the Ranji Trophy Group 'B' match here on Tuesday.
B Aparajith, leading the team in the absence of Vijay Shankar who missed out due to a niggle, elected to bowl and the bowlers justified the decision as Ashwin (5 for 67) and left-arm spinner R Sai Kishore (3 for 22) had the HP batsmen in a spin.
The visiting team looked in danger of being bowled out for a sub-100 score before Akash Vashist (35, 94 balls, 4 fours) and Mayank Dagar (33, 62 balls, 3 fours) got together at 76 for 7 to add 53 runs and lend respectability to the total.
Ashwin, who had taken eight wickets (four in each innings) during the narrow loss to Karnataka in the opening round, was at it again as he bowled beautifully to trouble all the batsmen.
The lanky off-spinner brought his experience to the fore and looked dangerous in every spell. He bowled 29 overs of which six were maidens to capture five wickets.
Medium-pacer K Vignesh struck the first blow for Tamil Nadu, dismissing Prashanth Chopra for 4, caught by N Ganga Sridhar Raju.
Ashwin struck with his second ball, having Priyanshu Khanduri caught in the covers by Ganga Sridhar Raju.
He also removed captain Ankit Kalsi (11), Nikhil Gangta (0) and Sumeet Varma (30) to hand Tamil Nadu the advantage.
Ashwin troubled all-rounder Rishi Dhawan with some lovely bowling before Sai Kishore got him.
The resistance by Vashist and Dagar revived the floundering Himachal innings.
The two played cautiously and kept Ashwin & Co at bay with some resolute defence before Vignesh (2/42) ended Dagar's resistance.
Tamil Nadu openers-Abhinav Mukund and debutant K Mukunth made eight runs from three overs before bad light ended play for the day.
Earlier, Tamil Nadu made five changes to the side that played Karnataka, bring in Ganga Sridhar Raju, K Mukunth, T Natarajan, J Kousik and M Shahrukh Khan in place of Dinesh Karthik, M Vijay, Vijay Shankar, M Ashwin and M Siddharth.
Brief scores: Himachal Pradesh 158 all out in 71.4 overs (A Vashist 35, Mayank Dagar 33, Sumeet Varma 30; R Ashwin 5/65, R Sai Kishore 3/22) vs Tamil Nadu 8 for no loss.
Delhi bundled out for 215 on Day 1
Delhi put up a disappointing batting performance to be bowled out for 215 on the opening day of their Ranji Trophy match against Andhra here on Tuesday.
By stumps, Andhra were also struggling at 16 for two, with both their openers back in the hut.
Playing their second match of the season following the draw against Kerala, Delhi lost the previous game's centurion, Kunal Chandela, early after being put in to bat.
Kunwar Bidhuri (22) and Nitish Rana (51 off 51) repaired the innings with a 60-run stand for the fourth wicket before a mini collapse pushed them on the back foot. Their innings ended in 70.6 overs.
Rana, who had scored a match-saving century against Kerala last week, saved Delhi the blushes again with a run-a-ball effort comprising nine fours and a six.
Lalit Yadav (50 off 104) put up a much-needed fight while batting with tail-enders, taking his team past 200.
Medium pacer K V Sasikanth (5/38 in 20.1 oves) was the pick of the bowlers for Andhra, claiming his fourth five-wicket haul in first-class cricket.
Delhi had managed to salvage a draw against Kerala in their tournament opener courtesy centuries from Chandela and Rana on the final day.
Sanklecha's 4-wicket haul help Maharashtra dismiss J&K for 209
Anupam Sanklecha's four-wicket haul helped Maharashtra dismiss Jammu & Kashmir for 209 in the first innings on the opening day of round two of its Ranji Trophy Group C match here on Tuesday.
The home team finished the day at 51 for 3 in 15.4 overs, trailing by 158 runs.
Sent in to bat, Jammu & Kashmir struggled against the Maharashtra attack led by veteran medium-pacer Sanklecha (4/56) and slipped to 42 for 5 and 79 for 6 before left-handed Abid Mushtaq (50, 55 balls, 2 fours, 4 sixes) batting at No. 9 began the rescue act.
His 54-run last wicket partnership with M Mudhasir (18 not out, 1 four, 1 six) proved valuable as it took J&K past the 200-run mark.
The 37-year old Sanklecha bowled with a lot of purpose and kept the rival batsmen on a leash and was rewarded with four wickets.
Opener Ahmed Banday (76) was the only top-order to offer resistance as the Maharashtra bowlers kept pegging away and picked up wickets at regular intervals.
His 149-ball knock which included 10 fours, ended when he nicked one to the 'keeper off Sanklecha.
In reply, Maharasthra lost the in-form opener Ruturaj Gaikwad for 10 as J&K fought back to have the host at 51 for 3 at stumps.
Mushtaq was at it for the visitors, getting two wickets including that of SS Bachhav off the last ball of the day.
Brief scores: Group C: Jammu & Kashmir 209 all out in 63.5 overs (Ahmed Banday 76, Abid Mushtaq 50; A Sanklecha 4/56, DR Deshmukh 2/15) vs Maharashtra 51 for 3 in 15.4 overs (MS Trunkwala 31 batting, Abid Mushtaq 2/14).
Uttarakhand 120 all out in 37.5 overs (D Negi 29; AJ Mandal 3/17, PM Datey 3/42) vs Chhattisgarh 109 for 5 in 35 overs (AN Khare 33 batting; Gaurav Singh 2/22).
Services 271 all out in 66.1 overs (NH Verma 53, RS Paliwal 58, Rahul Singh 55; Basant Mohanty 6/69) vs Odisha 43 for no loss in 16 overs (AR Sarangi 33 batting).
Assam 162 all out in 56.5 overs (Riyan Parag 55, Sibshankar Roy 27; Anukul Roy 4/28, Shahbaz Nadeem 3/55, Ashish Kumar 3/25) vs Jharkhand.
Tripura 63 all out in 19.4 overs (Tanmay Mishra 29; Harshal Patel 7/29, AH Hooda 3/14) vs Haryana 131 for 2 in 33 overs (C K Bishnoi 63 batting, SR Chauhan 39).
Juyal hits ton to take UP to 232/5
Young Uttar Pradesh opener Aryan Juyal struck a gritty 100, as he guided Uttar Pradesh to a modest 232/5 on the opening day of their Elite Group B Ranji Trophy game here on Tuesday.
Electing to bat first at the KSCA Hubli cricket ground, 18-year-old Juyal (109 off 251 balls, 11x4) stood tall, as he played a responsible and mature knock to pull his team out of trouble.
Juyal was the cynosure of eyes, as he did not take any unnecessary risk and ensured that he converted his start into a three-figure mark.
Juyal was ably supported by Mohammed Saif (56 batting off 124 balls, 8x4) who came in at number 5.
The duo stuck a 109-run stand and resurrected the innings.
Opener Almas Shaukat (22 off 76 balls; 3x4) and Juyal conjured a 56-run stand for the first wicket, before Karnataka pacer Ronit More dismissed Shaukat, who gave a catch to R Samarth.
Karnataka then pegged back the visitors as their medium-pacer Abhimanyu Mithun trapped one-down Madhav Kaushik (15 off 37 balls; 1x4) to leave them in a spot of bother at 80-2.
Two-down Akshdeep Nath (9 off 26 balls, 1x4) also fell cheaply, as UP slumped to 106-3.
However, the fall of wickets did not deter Juyal, who kept playing his shots and frustrated the opposition bowlers.
He found an able partner in Saif, as the duo conjured an 109-run stand for the fourth wicket and rebuilt their innings.
The duo took its time and hammered the lose deliveries.
It was only because of their stand that UP could pass the 200-run mark.
However, it was Mithun, who broke their stand after dismissing Juyal, who was caught by Devdutt Paddikal.
Mithun also removed Rinku Singh (4) quickly.
When stumps were drawn, Saif was at the crease along with Saurabh Kumar (12 not out).
For Karnataka, Mithun (3-45) was the pick of the bowlers, while More (1-22) and Shreyas Gopal (1-45) took a wicket each.
Tomorrow, Karnataka will look to bowl out UP as soon as possible and then their first target would be to take the crucial first inning lead.
Brief Scores: Uttar Pradesh 232/5 (Aryan Juyal 109, Mohammed Saif 56 batting; Abhimanyu Mithun 3-45) versus Karnataka.
At Dindigul: Himachal Pradesh 158 all out (Akash Vashist 35, Mayank Dagar 33; R Ashwin 5-65, R Sai Kishore 3- 22) versus Tamil Nadu 8/0 (Abhinav Mukund 6 batting, K Mukunth 2 batting). Tamil Nadu trail by 150 runs.
At Indore: Madhya Pradesh 125 all out (Yash Dubey 48, Himanshu Mantri 20; Anureet Singh 3-24; Soyeb Sopariya 3-38) versus Baroda 86/3 (Vishnu Solanki 27 batting, Krunal Pandya 22 batting; Avesh Khan 2-18). Baroda trail by 39 runs.
At Visakhapatnam: Railways 202/9 (Pratham Singh 98, Karn Sharma 52; Jaydev Unadkat 4-34, Prerak Mankad 2-33) versus Saurashtra.
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