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5.15pm - Lots to watch out for Kerala and Vidarbha have surged back into contention with outright wins today. For tomorrow we have quite a few tantalisingly poised games. In Jammu, Himachal are 32 for 1 chasing 235 for win. In Jaipur, Shitanshu Kotak and Sheldon Jackson have opened for Saurashtra. They are 11 for 0 chasing 306. Punjab will start batting tomorrow, needing 231 to win in Valsad. In Indore, a declaration will arrive at some point. UP have disappointed by not declaring and killing the game off, ironically after their captain (Suresh Raina) earlier had a moan about other captains not declaring. Anyway, we have enough thrills tomorrow. Do join us
9.15am Your week has just started, but we are already midway into the Ranji week. An exciting day in prospect with Vidarbha, Kerala and Himachal pushing for wins today. Also, Punjab-Gujarat's lead will be decided, and Mumbai-MP and Railways-Hyderabad promise close fights for three points. Zaheer Khan and Pragyan Ojha's bowling will be on show. As will be Amit Mishra's, who was selected for India yesterday. Welcome
Latest scores - scroll down for text
Vidarbha 206 and 140 (Mangaraj 5-19) beat Odisha (toss) 121 (Sandeep Singh 4-39) and 119 (Jungade 5-44) by 106 runs in Cuttack
Kerala (toss) 325 (Jagadeesh 134, Ferandez 111, Nadeem 4-90) beat Jharkhand 120 (Sreesanth 4-28) and 170 (Jaggi 90, Warrier 6-44) by an innings and 35 runs in Mallapuram
Saurashtra (toss) 228 (Pankaj Singh 5-61) and 11 for 0 need 295 to beat Rajasthan 299 (Menaria 103) and 234 for 9 decl. (Chouhan 73) in Japiur
Punjab (toss) 268 (Uday Kaul 93) and 0 for 0 need another 231 beat Gujarat 266 (Sandeep Sharma 4-40) and 232 (Sarabjit Singh 4-112) in Valsad
Himachal (toss) 189 (Ram Dayal 6-50) and 32 for 1 need another 203 to beat Jammu & Kashmir 175 (Malik 5-41) and 248 (Rassol 83, Dayal 71) in Jammu
Mumbai 304 (Pawar 111*, Pandey 6-48) and 192 for 5 (Jaffer 67) lead Madhya Pradesh (toss) 244 by 252 runs in Indore
Andhra 249 (Muzumdar 108*) and 10 for 0 trail Assam (toss) 394 for 5 decl. (Tarjinder Singh 103*) by 135 runs in Guwahati
Maharashtra 376 for 7 (Khadiwale 168, Motwani 91) lead Baroda 362 (Waghmode 113, Devdhar 104, Mundhe 4-72) (toss) by 14 runs in Pune
Hyderabad (toss) 337 (Ashish Reddy 82, Sandeep 68) and 130 for 6 lead Railways 213 (Shinde 5-78) by 254 runs in Hyderabad
Tamil Nadu 179 (Murtaza 7-80) and 5 for 0 need another 416 to beat Uttar Pradesh (toss) 392 (Murtaza 106, Kaif 68) and 207 in Chennai
Karnataka (toss) 272 (Kapoor 106, Harshal Patel 5-77) and (f/o) 63 for 0 trail Haryana 587 for 9 decl. (Jayant Yadav 211, Mishra 202*) by 252 runs in Hubli
Goa 64 for 4 trail Tripura 278 (Abhijit Dey 76, Gadekar 4-72) by 214 runs in Agartala
5.05pm - Summation from Hubli Writes in Siddarth Ravindran: "'As long as I play cricket I will remember Hubli, since I scored my first hundred and double-hundred here and my recall to the Indian team also came here,' Haryana captain Amit Mishra had said on Sunday. Karnataka will have less fond memories of the city, though, since their batting buckled in little more than two sessions to leave them needing a miracle to reach the knockout stages. Haryana started the round in seventh place, qualification looking a long way away, but an outright victory here will keep them dreaming of making the next stage. They are 63 for 0, still trailing by more than 250 runs."
5pm - Stumps in Indore Mumbai end at 192 for 5, leading by just 252. Their slowdown in the hour leading to the end of the day's play has robbed them a use of the fresh pitch in the morning session. That's when most wickets have been falling. Will Mumbai trust Agarkar and Zaheer enough to make a risky declaration tomorrow? We will find out
4.55pm - Stumps in Hyderabad Hyderabad are 130 for 6 at stumps, a lead of 254. They have the first-innings lead, so it's Railways who will be making all the play tomorrow
In Agartala, Tripura have picked up four wickets, and are looking good for three points should there be enough play tomorrow. Goa 64 for 4 in response to 278
4.50pm - Saurashtra chasing 306 Rajasthan have declared at 234 for 9. They will get about a couple of overs before stumps. Saurashtra need 306 to win. Only an outright win can keep Rajasthan alive. Saurashtra are third on the table right now, but won't mind an outright win. Another thriller coming up
Mumbai, meanwhile, are only 249 ahead, and can't declare yet. Mumbai have actually shut shop. Last five overs: 2 runs, 1 wicket. Clearly they have lost all initiative, and their bowlers will have to come up with a big effort tomorrow to get the outright win they desperately need. MP, second on the table right now, will take the one point they get by holding on to a draw
4.45pm - Siddarth Ravindran from Hubli
The loudest sound at the ground is of the passing train. Not much cheering from the crowd as the game meanders towards stumps. Karnataka's openers have begun positively again, and both will be keen to avoid the unpleasant feeling of being dismissed twice in a day. Karntaka 37/0
4.40pm - UP conserve energy Up are not going for an outright win. That has been their strategy all through the season. Despite a 213-run first-innings lead, they first didn't enforce follow-on, and are now batting on and on. At 205 for 8, they lead by 418, but haven't declared. Anyway they are on top of the table, and have one game in hand
4.35pm - Rajasthan keep losing wickets While we were expecting Rajasthan to declare and set Saurashtra a target, the target is setting itself. Rajasthan are now 224 for 8, a lead of 295. That match is well poised too, along with the ones in Valsad and Jammu
4.30pm - Ram Dayal at it again A valuable 30 in the first innings, six wickets in the second, 71 in the third, and now he has taken the first wicket in the fourth innings. Ram Dayal is doing it all for J&K. Himachal 12 for 1, needing another 223 to win
4.25pm - Lead for Maharashtra Amid late drama, including losing captain Rohit Motwani for 91, Maharashtra have secured three points by overtaking Baroda's 362 in Pune. It's unlikely we will get an outright result here. That's three points for Maharashtra and one for Baroda. Maharashtra still have no chance of making it, and will be stuck at the bottom with 11 points. Baroda will now have 22, second on the table, but this is also their last match. Anything can go wrong for them in the final round
4.15pm - Lower-order runs for Gujarat In Valsad, the hosts have hep up Punjab and have reached 209 for 8. That's a lead of 207, and it sets up the match beautifully
4.05pm - Goa all at sea As opposed to sea being all at Goa. They are 42 for 3 in response to Tripura's 278 in Agartala. Because of bad-weather interruptions, we can't expect any more than a first-innings result in this match. Mora Singh: 6-3-8-2
4pm - Himachal need 235 to win An impressive effort from the J&K lower order to take the third innings to 248, the highest score of the match so far. Parvez Rassol scored 83, Ram Dayal 71. Himachal now need 235 to win, and we have enough time for an outright result here. If J&K win, they come back into the reckoning. For Himachal, though, it doesn't make a difference, because this is their last match and they have only 12 points so far
3.55pm - Hyderabad collapse in second innings After taking a 124-run lead, Hyderabad are now down at 106 for 6 in the second innings. Karan Sharma has taken three for Railways, Murali Kartik two. Hyderabad will need another 70-80 runs before they can start feeling safe
3.50pm - Declarations delayed in Jaipur and Indore Both Mumbai and Rajasthan are desperate for outright wins. They have taken first-innings leads, but they have lost wickets in second innings to slow things down. Rajasthan are going at less than three an over, and now lead by 255 with five wickets in hand. Mumbai are going at 3.5 an over, they have lost just lost two set batsmen, and lead by 224 with six wickets in hand. Are these sides willing to take outlandish risks?
3.40pm - Follow-on in Hubli Karnataka bowled out for 272. That's 120 fewer than Haryana's eighth-wicket partnership. Haryana will be desperate for an innings result here. They have three session and a bit to bowl Karnataka out in
3.36pm - Big win for Vidarbha Jungade finishes Odisha off with his fifth wicket. A win by 106 runs. Odisha bowled out for 119 in 40.1 overs. Add to that just 50.4 overs in first innings. Vidarbha now third in Group B, moving to 19 points, ahead of Delhi's 17. Odisha are now stuck at 16 after seven games
3.35pm - Jammu set for close finish Ram Dayal has taken J&K to a fighting total. He is 61 not out, J&K 234 for 8. That's a lead of 220. Interesting chase in the offing
3.30pm - Harshal gets Karnataka again Reports Siddarth Ravindran: "Harshal Patel get five in the innings once again against Karnataka. He has KP Appanna caught in the gully and Karnataka slip to 260/9. Kunal Kapoor, on 98 when the ninth wicket fell, brings up the century with a glide down to third man. Salutes the cheering crowd."
3.20pm - Tarjinder Singh gets hundred, Assam declare Assam's Tarjinder Singh has scored his third first-class century as Assam build their lead. They have declared at 394 for 5 with a lead of 145. That's a positive move. Go for the win. Assam have 17 points and Andhra 20, so it makes sense to go for the win
3.15pm - Vidarbha get another Amol Jungade breaks what would have been a prickly eighth-wicket stand. Odisha are 117 for 8 now, needing 109 more to win
3pm - Odisha slow slide down Odisha have now added 33 for the eight wicket, but with 115 still required there is some way to go still. Are Lagnajit Samal and Alok Sahoo delaying the inevitable? Odisha 111 for 7
2.40pm - Nearly a hat-trick in Hubli Reports a breathless Siddarth Ravindran: "Harshal Patel, who caused so much damage to Karnataka last year, unleashes a couple of corking deliveries: first a bouncer that was too good for SL Akshay, who fended it to gully, then a pitched up delivery that HS Sharath shouldered arms to be bowler. The crowd is excited as there are seven men around the bat for the hat-trick ball. Harshal delivers a pinpoint yorker but Appanna squeezes it out. Karnataka 228 for 8. What a way to go to tea
In Indore, Wasim Jaffer has made his way to an attacking 48 off 48. Mumbai lead by 197 with eight wickets in hand. Expecting a declaration today. Mumbai need an outright win to stay alive
Other tea scores being updated at the top of the page
2.35pm Harbhajan Singh may not be feeling well, but Punjab are doing all right. They have just taken the sixth second-innings wicket to reduce Gujarat to effectively 145 for 6. However, it won't be a cakewalk in the fourth innings either. Interesting sessions ahead in Valsad
Not well today. Stomach ache. Food position. Feeling yukk— Harbhajan Singh (@harbhajan_singh) December 24, 2012
2.20pm - Himachal get the big wicket of Rassol Parvez Rassol has finally fallen for 83, but he has given his side something to bowl at. At 180 for 6, J&K are 166 ahead. And once again, Ram Dayal - 36 not out - is putting up important lower-order runs
2.15pm "from 4 points from 5 matches to 18 points from 7 matches , sreeshant effect is showing on kerala, now a match against andra which is like 'make and take'"
Azeem Hafiz, great recovery yes, but you have got to remember the next match is Andhra's home game. They are already second on the table, so an intriguing choice of what kind of pitch they prepare. They can go for a batting track and aim for three points, but then some other team can score seven from behind. If they go for a result pitch, they have the Sreesanth risk to keep in mind
2.10pm - Khadiwale puts Maharashtra on course Baroda have finally got rid of Harshad Khadiwale for 168, but he has put Maharashtra on course for a first-innings lead. At 306 for 5, they need 57 for three points
2.05pm - Odisha folding at home They have lost two more. At 78 for 7, they still need 148 to win. They began the game decently placed in the points table, but with 16 points from seven games they will need miracles to go to quarters
2.02pm - Jogiya goes khalli balli in Hubli Joginder Sharma has picked another Karnataka wicket. A follow-on is a possibility now. Amit Varma caught at the wicket for 3. Haryana all over the hosts. If Karnataka need inspiration, they need only to be reminded of how bad a state Haryana were in before Mishra and Jayant Yadav came together. Karnataka 198 for 6
2pm - No-ball drama in Indore Anand Rajan produced a jaffa to get Jaffer, but the umpires look at the replays to find his foot landed on the line. And to make it worse, it slipped further. Rajan has had a problem with no-balls, and it was only a matter of time before it turned into heartbreak. Mumbai 105 for 2, a lead of 165
1.55pm - Punjab on the prowl Moving west, in Valsad, Punjab are tightening the noose. Gujarat have lost four for 108, including the big wicket of Parthiv Patel for 31 off 26. Effectively they are 106 for 4 now
1.50pm - Vidarbha move closer to six points In Cuttack, Odisha are reeling at 74 for 5. They need another 152 to win. Amol Jungade has taken three.
1.42pm - Kerala get all seven Sandeep Warrier has taken 6 for 44 to lead Kerala to an innings victory. Jharkhand bowled out for 170. Ishank Jaggi last man out. For 90. That's an important surge for Kerala. They are now level at third with Jharkhand. Both have 18 points from seven matches
1.35pm - Siddarth Ravindran from Hubli
Karnataka's chances in this game may be bleak, but a sizeable crowd has turned up even though this is Monday. Plenty of kids in the VIP stands, and they are providing non-stop commentary on the game. Discussions about Joginder Sharma's over of fame in 2007 on as he comes on to bowl. Karnataka 186 for 4
Ganesh Sathish comes out with some drinks, and as he returns he is swarmed by kids asking for autographs and pictures. He signs quite a few but with the crowd around him not abating, a cop asks the kids to go back to their seats. Meanwhile Joginder has struck. Binny is lbw. Karnataka 190 for 5
1.30pm - Kerala push some more Thanks Febin for the update. CP Shahid has taken three quick wickets, and now Kerala are one wicket from seven points. Jharkhand 160 for 9. They still need 45 to make Kerala bat again
1.25pm - Finally cricket in Agartala Another delayed start, and Tripura have lost three wickets tofay for the addition of 71 runs. Harshad Gadekar has taken four wickets, and is looking for his first five-wicket haul in first-class cricket
1.15pm - Vidarbha eye six points Chasing 226, Odisha have lost three wickets for 41. This match is hurtling towards a result today
1.10pm - Kerala move closer Two more strikes for them. Warrier has one more. Jharkhand 151 for 6. They still need 54 to make Kerala bat again. Kerala can get all seven here
12.55pm - Assam take lead In Guwahati, the hosts have gone past Andhra's 249 with six wickets still in hand. Tajinder Singh and Dheeraj jadhav have added 97 for the fifth wicket. Assam 268 for 4. With that Assam remain the race for quarters. And if they can bowl Andhra out for a second time, it will be even better for them
12.50pm - More movement in Jammu Vikramjeet Malik's double strike in the middle had left J&K effectively at 105 for 5. Rassol still not out on 60. J&K need to squeeze out another 60 from somewhere
12.45pm - Siddarth Ravindran in Hubli
Haryana strike five minutes after lunch. Harshal Patel has CM Gautam lbw, there are shouts of 'Come on Binny, come on,' as the stand-in Karnataka captain walks in. Kar are now 149/4
Noon Lunch scores are getting updated at the top of the page. Mumbai have scored a quick 48 for no loss. Expect a declaration. Punjab have taken two Gujarat wickets already, who are now effectively 26 for 2.
In Hubli, Karnataka haven't let the scoring rate dip despite the big wickets they lost. Plenty of boundaries in the half hour before the break. They are now 138 for 3. Haryana well and truly on top, though.
Hyderabad have taken the lead. Railways bowled out for 213. Amol Shinde gets five
11.55am - Thriller being set up in Jammu In Jammu, Himachal are picking wickets, but J&K are getting enough runs to constitue a fighting total. Parvez Rassol at 50 not out is the key man. J&K 104 for 4 now, effectively 90 for 4
11.45am - Chaos in Cuttack Odisha have pulled themselves back into the game by taking the last seven Vidarbha wickets for just 41 runs. Vidarbha bowled out in 58.1 overs. Alok Mangaraj, medium-pacer, is the chief wrecker with 5 for 19. That, though, is just an outside chance. If Odisha get 226, it will be the highest score of this match.
11.43am - Khadiwale keeps Maharashtra on track Harshad Khadiwale has scored 125 out of Maharashtra's 212 for 5. They need another 151 for first-innings points against Baroda. That won't make much difference to Maharashtra's fortunes, but could hurt Baroda who are currently joint-leaders of Group B but are playing their last league match. Other teams have a game in hand
11.40am - Hyderabad tighten grip Amol Shinde has contributed with threew wickets of his own to reduce Railways to 208 for 7. Hyderabad lead by 129
11.35am - No play in Agartala Bad weather again. Only 58 overs possible so far. Tripura 170 for 5
11.30am - Gloomy for Karnataka Siddarth Ravindran from Hubli: "Karnataka all at sea. Their two biggest names have already been dismissed. After Uthappa, it is the turn of Manish Pandey, who is bowled by Mishra for 7. Kar 96/3"
11.25am - Mumbai promote Tare It seems to be a move to go for quick runs before declaring. Wasim Jaffer is not opening the second innings, it's Aditya Tare with Kaustubh Pawar
11.20am - Kerala push for seven points Kerala have taken two wickets this morning to reduce Jharkhand to 91 for 4. They still need 114 to make Kerala bat again. Sandeep Warrier has taken three wickets. Seven points here can give Kerala an outside chance at making it to the quarters. They have only 11 points so far
11.10am - Siddarth Ravindran in Hubli
Big wicket in Hubli. Robin Uthappa is gone for 51, are Karnataka chances gone as well? Uthappa is caught at short leg after top-edging an attempted sweep off Amit Mishra. The umpire didn't hesitate in ruling him out but Uthappa was clearly unhappy with the decision, stood at the wicket for a few moments before making the slow trudge off. Kar 83/2
11.05am - Comedy in Indore But MP are not laughing. Actually this is not funny at all.
Anand Rajan plays a forward-defensive to Abhishek Nayar, is beaten, there is day light between bat and ball, there is no sound, and Mumbai make a polite enquiry. Nayar is almost turning back for the next ball, Anand Rajan is practising his next shot, and Nand Kishore belatedly and ridiculously raises his finger.
Soon another wicket falls. This time it is a proper edge, but then No. 11 Ishwar Pandey is given caught at the wicket without edging the ball. Horrendous umpiring, this time from CK Nandan
MP are bowled out for 244, losing their last four wickets for three runs. That's a lead of 60 for Mumbai. They will want to go for the kill here. They desperately need an outright win
11am - Fifty for Uthappa From SIddarth Ravindran: "Jayant Yadav, who scored a double-century yesterday, comes on to bowl his offspinners. He grunts as he delivers the ball, not seen that in a spinner before. Karnataka are 73 for 1. And at the other end, the other double-centurion Amit Mishra starts off. A superb straight drive and a flick behind square leg brings up Robin Uthappa's 50 off 54 balls. Huge cheers from the crowd."
10.55am - Ali "allrounder" Murtaza After scoring a century from No. 8, Ali Murtaza has taken seven wickets to bundle Tamil Nadu out for just 179. UP haven't enforced the follow-on, though. However, they are off to a quick start and 31 for 0 in 6.4 overs
This is the fifth time season that somebody has scored a hundred and taken a five-for in the same match. Others are Rishi Dhawan, Kamlesh Makvana, Parvez Rassol and D Sivakumar
10.45am - Nayar strikes again Abhishek Nayar might not be pleasing on the eye, but he is one hell of a performer for Mumbai. Just before the new ball becomes due and the big boys take over, Nayar has produced a huge breakthrough by bowling out Harpreet Singh for 50. MP are 241 for 7 now, needed another 63 to reach Mumbai's 304
10.41am - Uday Kaul does it again Punjab wicketkeeper-batsman just added 31 with the last man Sarabjeet Singh to take Punjab to 268, a lead of two runs. Gujarat will be gutted. Three points here would have given them a decent chance to qualify. Now they will have to do all the running. Over the next five sessions
10.40am - Siddarth Ravindran from Hubli
More people streaming in now, and they are getting what they wanted to see - Robin Uthappaa in full flow. Some lovely drives this morning, including one just now off Mohit Sharma for four. Kar 60/1 after having lost the wicket of KL Rahul. Shouts of 'Come on Jogi,' as Joginder Sharma runs in to bowl
On Joginder Sharma, yes he is still playing, and he signed autographs in the morning. Good to see people not forgetting people
I don't care what the scoreboard says at the end of the game, in my book we're gonna be winners..!! Match Day 3 Against Karnataka— yuZvendrachahal (@yuzi_chahal) December 24, 2012
10.25am - Double-strike for Ashish Reddy In Hyderabad, Ashish Reddy has picked up two wickets on the third morning to go with his 82 with the bat. The game is more important for Railways. Hyderabad as good as out with six points from six games. Outright result is unlikely here
PS: Mahesh Rawat has fallen too, and Railways are struggling at 172 for 5
10.20am - Harpreet counterattacks for MP Harpreet Singh, who took arguably the catch of the season on day 1, is hitting Mumbai bowlers sensibly, and has reached 42 off 57. After the early wicket of Choudhury, this innings is taking the initiative away from Mumbai. MP are now 229 for 6, needing another 76 for three points. New ball due in nine overs. That will be crucial too
10.15am - Five for Pankaj Pankaj Singh has picked up another five-wicket haul - his 17th in 67 first-class games - and Saurashtra are bowled out for 228, a deficit of 71. Rajasthan can't rest, though. They are at the bottom of the table, and need outright wins in both their matches to give themselves an outside chance at qualifying. Quick runs needed for them
10.13am - Hold-up in Hubli Reports Siddarth Ravindran: "A hold-up of several minutes in Hubli as some people are walking past the sightscreen. It takes the batsman, umpire and several fielders to tell them to move out of the way before play can finally resume. No break in concentration for Uthappa though as he effortlessly eases the ball through cover for four. Kar 43 fpr no loss."
10.10am - Gujarat close in in Valsad And they have got the ninth wicket too. Punjab now 237 for 9 with Sandeep Sharma gone for a duck. Kushang Patel and Ishwar Chaudhury have got the wickets today
10.05am - Drama in Valsad Punjab have just lost their eighth wicket. They are 30 runs behind Gujarat's 266. Uday Kaul, not out on 70, is the key man here
Saurashtra and MP support staffs will be following this match closely. If Gujarat get three points here, it spells more trouble for those two teams, who are currently places second and third. Gujarat are one point behind the top three, and Punjab have already qualified
9.55am - Pankaj Singh hurts Saurashtra again The tall and strapping Rajasthan bowler has struck twice early on the third morning to interrupt Saurasthra's comeback. Kamlesh makvana gone for his overnight 54 and they have lost two wickets for the addition of 9 runs. Saurashtra 222 for 9 now
9.50am - Small crowd but involved Messages Siddarth Ravindran from Hubli: "'Too high, too high,' shouts a man from the crowd as Haryana make a loud appeal for lbw against KL Rahul. The umpire agrees with him. More advice follows: 'Get behind the line, Uthappa.' Karnataka 23/0"
9.45am - Agarkar strikes Fifteen minutes into the third day's play, Ajit Agarkar bowls a slower ball, Satyam Choudhury is early into it, and this time Agarkar takes the catch himself, unlike his colleagues. And he is denied what looked like a plumb lbw next ball Ankit Sharma survives. MP 198 for 6
9.35am - Siddarth Ravindran has settled down in Hubli (the stadium, that is)
Not much of a crowd in as Karnataka have the unenviable task of overhauling Haryana's 587/9. Hubli gets pretty hot in the afternoon, and this is the coolest time of the day's play
9.20am - Starts in earnest Updates from east India first. In Cuttack, Vidarbha have adding 10 to their lead of 149. They are effectively 159 for 2. Will we see a declaration today, considering they bowled Odisha out in 50 overs yesterday?
In Guwahati, Andhra have picked up two early wickets. Assam are now 177 for 4, chasing 250 for three points. Their set batsman Sibsankar Roy is gone for 77
No play in Agartala so far. Tripura are 170 for 5 after the 58 overs that have been possible so far
Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfoFeeds: Sidharth Monga
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