Raghu helps Karnataka edge a thriller
Karnataka 337 and 125 for 8 (Raghu 50) beat Uttar Pradesh 264 and 194 by 2 wickets
C Raghu almost single-handedly led Karnataka's run-chase at Kanpur, steering them to a thrilling two-wicket win against defending champions Uttar Pradesh. Resuming on a jittery 54 for 5 overnight, Karnataka found themselves at a dire 73 for 7 before Raghu and B Akhil added 47 vital runs for the eighth wicket. Raghu fell after bringing up his fifty but only two runs were required at that stage and Karnataka sneaked through. Rudra Pratap Singh was the most successful bowler for UP with 4 for 30. Karnataka, who suffered a heavy defeat in the opening game, now have eight points from three games while UP, with just two points from three games, have an uphill task ahead.
"It was a very difficult and two-paced pitch," Venkatesh Prasad, the former Indian seam bowler who's currently coaching Karnataka, told Cricinfo. "The ball was jumping from a good-length spot. We knew we would lose a couple of wickets but ended up losing too many on the third day. It was left to Raghu in the end, who played an amazing innings. Also we have batting skill till No.9 and 10. Even Vinay Kumar, our opening bowler, can go and get some runs. We knew that we could do it. All the effort these guys have put in pre-season is now paying off."
Andhra 215 and 145 beat Saurashtra 87 and 195 (Kotak 58) by 78 runs
Andhra's new-ball pairing of Syed Sahabuddin and D Kalyankrishna helped them wrap up a convincing 78-run victory on the final day of their encounter with Saurashtra at Rajkot. Resuming on 127 for 5, Saurashtra continued their fight thanks to a battling half-century from veteran Shitanshu Kotak. Rakesh Dhruv carried on the good work with a plucky 36 but lack of support cost them dear. Mohammad Faiq, the Andhra offspinner, chipped in with two wickets as they completed their second win of the season.
Hyderabad 205 and 255 (Yadav 59) drew with Gujarat 406 and 22 for 1
Hyderabad's last eight wickets held out for 74.4 overs of the day as they thwarted Gujarat's bid for an outright win at the Visaka International Stadium in Uppal. Trailing by 201 in the first innings, Hyderabad patiently ground their way to 255 off 118.2 overs, with Anirudh Singh leading the way with a 125-ball 59. His 33-run partnership with Narender Pal Singh kept the Gujarat bowlers at bay for close to an hour. Gujarat, faced with an unrealistic target of 54 off the last four overs, ended on 22 for 1 and had to settle for two points from the encounter.
Punjab 353 and 113 for 3 drew with Mumbai 348 (Muzumdar 119, Mota 74, Amanpreet 4-72, Malhatra 4-91)
Amol Muzumdar's gutsy century ended in a calamitous run-out - when he backed up too far at the non-striker's end - as Mumbai fell five runs short of Punjab's first-innings score at Mohali. Needing 82 more to gain a first-innings lead when the day began, with four wickets in hand, Mumbai inched closer thanks to Muzumdar's 21st first-class century. Mumbai's situation looked bleak at 302 for 9, when Ishan Malhatra removed two of the tailenders, but debutant Mundeep Mungela supported him with a fighting 23 in 100 minutes. His straight-drive, though, which deflected off Amanpreet's palms signaled the end, reducing Muzumdar to tears. Punjab batted out the rest of the day to end on 113 for 3.
Haryana 287 and 195 for 5 dec drew with Tamil Nadu 169 and 52 for 1
Haryana snapped up two points from the drawn game at Chennai with both sides getting batting practice on the final day. Resuming on 31 for no loss, Haryana pottered to 195 for 5 in 64 overs, with five of their batsmen passing 20, before declaring. Tamil Nadu, in their second innings, lost the wicket of Anirudha Srikkanth in the second over but got through the rest of the day without further damage. Both teams now have two points from three games, leaving them with a lot to do over the next four rounds.
Baroda 244 and 253 for 7 (Williams 106) drew with Delhi 493
Connor Williams continued his fine form with his 13th first-class hundred, as Baroda staved off defeat against Delhi at Feroz Shah Kotla. It was the third successive game when Delhi earned the first-innings lead but failed to close the game out. It was Baroda's first reversal of the season, after two fine wins in the opening two matches. Williams thwarted Delhi with a sedate 275-ball 106. He received support from Satyajit Parab, Ajit Bhoite and Pinal Shah, the wicketkeeper. The Delhi seamers - Ashish Nehra, Ishant Sharma and Kunal Lal - managed two wickets apiece but couldn't get the final three wickets to force a victory.