Ranji round-up, Elite Group, 5th round, 3rd day December 15, 2004

Siddiqui gives Maharashtra their first victory

Cricinfo staff

Maharashtra 400 (Mohan 122, Siddiqui 59) beat Assam 201 and 153 by an innings and 46 runs

Iqbal Siddiqui shone with both bat and ball as Maharashtra romped home to a comprehensive innings victory in the bottom-of-the-table clash with Assam at Aurangabad. Siddiqui, who played the lone Test for India against England back in 2001, made a stroke-filled 59, which included six fours and three sixes, before snapping up three wickets and rocking he Assam top order. Kiran Adhav, the left-arm spinner, picked up three more and Assam capitulated for just 153 in their second innings. Earlier, Maharashtra had stretched their total to a round 400 with Dhruv Mohan completing his century and adding 62 crucial runs with Siddiqui.

Tamil Nadu 244 and 190 for 3 (Vidyut 99) lead Punjab 218 (Jesuraj 7-76) by 216 runs

Rajamani Jesuraj's seven-wicket haul on debut was followed by a crucial 99 from Vidyut Sivaramakrishnan as Tamil Nadu seized control against Punjab at Chennai. Jesuraj picked up four out of the five wickets this morning, and despite contributions from Ankur Kakkar and VRV Singh, Punjab fell 26 runs short of Tamil Nadu's first-innings total. Tamil Nadu began shakily in the second innings with Sadagoppan Ramesh, the former Indian opener, falling in the first over - but Vidyut steered them to safety with help from Subramanium Badrinath (43 not out). After a string of easy victories, Punjab were staring at defeat for the first time this season.

Hyderabad 246 and 221 (Vinay 75, Srivastava 5-55) lead Uttar Pradesh 325 by 142 runs

On a day when Venkatapathy Raju announced his retirement from first-class cricket, Uttar Pradesh had victory in their sight after their opening bowler, Salabh Srivastava, ripped through Hyderabad's batting. Srivastava claimed three of the top five, including dismissing Ambati Rayudu for a second-ball duck, before returning to clean up two of the tailenders. Vinay Kumar defied UP for his 165-ball 75 but couldn't muster any partnerships of sizeable proportions.

Karnataka 273 for 8 (Uthappa 88, Shinde 52) trail Delhi 427 for 7 dec by 154 runs

Despite half-centuries from Robin Uthappa and Sudhindra Shinde, Karnataka struggled on the third day against Delhi. Most of the Karnataka batsmen got starts but, unlike the Delhi batsmen, none converted it into a big score. Uthappa made a patient 88, that spanned 210 balls, while Shinde, who has been in and out of the side, gave the innings some impetus with his 89-ball 52. But Shinde fell to Ajay Jadeja late in the day and Karnataka lost two more wickets before stumps were drawn, giving Delhi a whiff of their first win this season.

Madhya Pradesh 207 (Ojha 67, Ali 53*, Parida 5-62) and 172 for 3 (Ojha 61, Bundela 52) trail Railways 373 by 6 runs

Naman Ojha and Devendra Bundela led Madhya Pradesh's fightback after they were asked to follow on against Railways at Indore. After being dismissed for 207 in their first innings, when they came unstuck against the offspin of Kulamani Parida, MP made a bold reply the second time around. Ojha, who had made 67 in the first innings, stitched together partnerships with Amay Khurasiya and Bundela and MP were just six runs adrift at the end of the day.

Gujarat 232 and 102 for 2 trail Mumbai 467 (Muzumdar 131, Shetty 54) by 133 runs

Amol Muzumdar's composed 131 guided Mumbai to a comfortable position against Gujarat at the end of the third day at the Wankhede Stadium. Muzumdar, who resumed with 56, and Nishit Shetty shared an important 132-run stand for the fourth wicket, and Mumbai cruised past Gujarat's first-innings total of 232. Even after Muzumdar finally fell the Mumbai lower order collected 91 runs in quick time and managed to extend the lead to 235. Sairaj Bahutule claimed the openers in the final session, and Gujarat still need to score 133 more to avoid an innings defeat.