Ranji Trophy

Ranji Trophy round-up: Mumbai collapse against Baroda pacers on opening day of 500th match

In a group B clash, Cheteshwar Pujara smashed his 43rd first-class hundred as Saurashtra reached 311/1 at stumps on Day 1 against Gujarat.

The much-vaunted Mumbai batting line-up came a cropper on a lively track against the Baroda pace bowling duo of Atit Sheth and Lukman Meriwala as the hosts were shot out for a paltry 171 on day one of their 500th Ranji Trophy game on Thursday.

In reply, Baroda made 63/1 in 26 overs in their first innings in the Group C match at the Wankhede Stadium.

It was a combination of impressive swing and seam bowling from right-arm Atit (5/50) and left-arm Meriwala (5/52), aided by poor shots attempted by the Mumbai batsmen that sent the home team to the doom.

For Mumbai skipper Aditya Tare, who opened the innings, stood tall in making 50 before being bowled off the inside edge by Atit.

Asked to bat first, Mumbai plunged deep into trouble to be 5/2 by the third over, with Atit sending back in-form opener Prithvi Shaw and Ajinkya Rahane for ducks. The home side never fully recovered from these early setbacks.

Tare was fifth out just before lunch, taken with the hosts and 41-time champions tottering at 103 for five. The ’keeper-batsman stayed at the wicket for 143 minutes, played diligently in contrast to some of his teammates when facing 82 balls and struck 8 fours.

Mumbai lost three more wickets to be 131/8 after lunch before a 40-run stand between Dhawal Kulkarni (17) and Vijay Gohil (16) revived the innings for a brief while before both were dismissed at the same score as Mumbai were shot out at the stroke of tea.

Murali Vijay slams ton

In another Group C encounter, opener Murali Vijay warmed up in style for the upcoming Test series against Sri Lanka by scoring a century to help Tamil Nadu reach 292/3 against Odisha on the opening day.

Electing to bat, the visitors lost skipper Abhinav Mukund (12), who was run-out following a mix-up with Vijay.

However, the Test opener was involved in two century partnerships, first with wicket-keeper N Jagadeesan (88) and B Indrajith (41 batting), which put Tamil Nadu in the driver’s seat.

Brief Scores (Group C): Tamil Nadu 292/3 in 90 overs (Murali Vijay 140, N Jagadeesan 88, B Indrajith 41 batting) vs Odisha.
Andhra 252/2 in 89.6 overs (DB Prashanth Kumar 120*, G Hanuma Vihari 62, Ricky Bhui 49*) vs Tripura.
Mumbai 171 all out in 56.2 overs (Aditya Tare 50; Atit Sheth 5/50, Lukman Meriwala 5/52) vs Baroda 63/1 in 26 overs (Vishnu Solanki 32, Roystan Dias 1/15).

Pujara scores 43rd first-class ton

Cheteswar Pujara scored his 43rd first-class hundred and Snell Patell his first, guiding Saurashtra to a comfortable 311/1 at stumps on day one of their Group B match against defending champions Gujarat.

Pujara (115) and Patel (156) shared an unbeaten 252-run stand after new recruit Robin Uthappa fell in the 24th over.

It was good match practice for Pujara ahead of the Sri Lanka series that begins with the first Test at the Eden Gardens from November 16.

The gritty right-hander faced 188 balls and his effort included 15 fours. Pujara had broken Vijay Merchant’s record of most double hundreds in first-class cricket by an Indian after scoring 204 against Jharkhand last week.

Patel too was impressive in his eighth first-class game and played 277 balls in an effort that included 21 boundaries.

Brief scores (Group B):
Saurashtra 311/1 in 90 overs (Pujara 115*, Patel 156*; Chawla 1/64).
Haryana 99/7 in 44 overs vs Rajasthan.
J&K 355/6 in 90 overs (Khajuria 101, Bisht 101) vs Jharkhand.

After triple ton, Mayank Agarwal smashes 169

Mayank Agarwal continued his dream run in Ranji Trophy smashing a hapless Delhi bowling attack into submission as hosts Karnataka cruised to 348/4 on the first day of their group A encounter.

Agarwal, known for his exploits in shorter formats, has been in good form having struck a career-best 304 in the last game against Maharashtra. His two back to back three-figures have come after he bagged a pair against Hyderabad in an earlier match of the season.

On Thursday, he treated the Delhi bowlers with utter disdain remaining unbeaten on 169 off 235 balls.

Karnataka had the upperhand throughout the day despite Delhi getting KL Rahul (9) and Karun Nair (15) cheaply.

Agarwal hit 23 boundaries and three huge sixes, treating the two spinners Manan Sharma (0/78 in 16 overs) and Vikas Mishra (0/87 in 24 overs) with little respect.

Rishabh Pant had rough debut as a captain in a first-class game as his two frontline spinners were collectively taken for 165 runs in their 40 overs.

How bad the Delhi bowling was could be gauged from the fact that they conceded 45 boundaries and five sixes in 90 overs – virtually bowling at least one boundary delivery per over.

Brief Scores (Group A):
Karnataka 348/4 (Mayank Agarwal 169*, Manish Pandey 74; Navdeep Saini 1/44) vs Delhi.
UP 349 all out (Upendra Yadav 127, Saurabh Kumar 133; Rajjakuddin Ahmed 3/103) vs Assam 25/0.
Maharashtra 249/5 (Ankit Bawne 92, Rohit Motwani 52; Amit Mishra 2/48, Karan Thakur 2/52) vs Railways.

Fazal, Ramaswamy put Vidarbha in command

Centuries from openers Faiz Fazal and Sanjay Ramaswamy took Vidarbha to a commanding 285/1 against Bengal on day one of their group D fixture.

In the form of his life, left-handed Fazal hit his third successive century of the season with a sublime 142 (22x4), while Ramaswamy gave fine support at the other end with a patient 117 (14x4).

Ramaswamy was unbeaten with senior pro Wasim Jaffer (18) when bad light stopped play after 83 overs on day one.

Brief Scores (Group D):
Vidarbha 285/1 in 83 overs (Faiz Fazal 142, Sanjay Ramaswamy 117*) vs Bengal.
Himachal Pradesh 175 in 44.2 overs (Pankaj Rao 3/52, Sumit Ruikar 3/20) vs Chhattisgarh 91/1 vs 34 overs (Rishabh Tiwari 46*, Ashutosh Singh 40*).
Services 228/8 in 90 overs (Nakul Verma 64, Vikas Yadav 61; Heramb Parab 3/35) vs Goa.

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