April 29, 2003

Sehwag keeps Delhi in the hunt

Staff Reporter

A dazzling unbeaten knock from Virender Sehwag kept hosts Delhi in the hunt for a place in the Ranji Trophy Elite Group final against Mumbai. When play ended on the penultimate day of their semi-final against Tamil Nadu, the home team were 159/5, needing another 164 runs for victory.

Tamil Nadu, who began the fourth morning at 88/4 in their second innings, were eventually dismissed for 261. Overnight not out batsmen Sadagoppan Ramesh and Sridharan Sharath made 55 and 75 respectively. Vasanth Saravanan, who made 34, was the other significant contributor as the visitors gained an overall lead of 332. For Delhi, medium-pacer Narender Singh Negi claimed 3 for 41.

When the hosts replied, their top-order batsmen with the exception of Sehwag struggled on a pitch whose bounce began to get increasingly inconsistent. Sehwag, though, was not to be stifled. Unfurling his vast repertoire of strokes, he raced to 98 not out off just 108 balls with 19 fours and one huge six. On Tuesday, he will be hoping to carry on the good work and see his team home.