Ranji Trophy Plate League, 5th round, 3rd day December 27, 2006

Yashpal stars amid the ruins

Cricinfo staff

Himachal Pradesh 315 and 22 for 1 lead Services 191 (Yashpal 119*, Malik 4-59, Bhatia 4-37)

Yashpal Singh ploughed through the Services wreckage on a day dominated by Himachal Pradesh. Yashpal, the only Services batsman to cross 20, was undefeated on a fine 115 in a total of 191. Yashpal clattered 13 fours and six sixes in his 150-ball knock, swinging his bat as the rest fell around him. Services, though, fell way short of HP's first-innings total with medium-pacer Vikramjeet Singh and left-arm spinner Vishal Bhatia snapping up four wickets apiece. HP were 22 for 1 at the end of the day.

Orissa 552 and 18 for 0 lead Jammu & Kashmir 198 (Satpathy 5-72) by 372 runs

Sanjay Satpathy, the offspinner, wrecked Jammu & Kashmir in their first innings, pocketing five wickets and restricting them to 198. Orissa, who'd amassed a mammoth 552 in the first innings, gained a vice-like grip on the contest with a 354-run lead but strangely chose not to enforce the follow-on. Orissa, already ensured of a place in the semi-final, probably decided to gain some batting practice ahead of the knock-out stage. Satpathy's five-wicket haul, his ninth in first-class cricket, was complemented by two wickets apiece from Sukanta Khatua and Niranjan Behara.

Kerala 264 and 47 for 3 lead Railways 184 (Cheruvatur 4-68) by 127 runs

Sony Cheruvatur's four-wicket haul gave Kerala the upper hand on a run-curtailed third day in Delhi, gaining an overall 127-run lead against Railways. Shreyas Khanolkar was the lone star in the brittle Railways batting line-up as they collapsed for 184, with six batsmen falling in single digits. Kerala replied with 47 for 3 in their second dig and with no chance of qualifying for the semi-finals will look for a consolation win tomorrow. Railways, on the other hand, will keep one eye on the Nagpur clash and hope that Assam beat Vidarbha and help them reach the knock-out stage.

Assam 308 and 82 and 3 lead Vidarbha 244 (Konwar 4-58) by 146 runs

Offspinner Arnald Konwar's four wickets thwarted Vidarbha's bid to gain the first-innings lead, weakening their chances of entering the knock-out stage. Assam continued their fine form by gaining he first-innings lead with Vidarbha's middle-order hardly putting up a fight. Assam responded with 82 for 3 in their second effort, with Tarjinder Singh leading their charge with 35. Assam have already ensured their spot in the semi-finals.

Madhya Pradesh 205 and 69 for 1 need 190 runs to beat Goa 223 and 240 (Asnodkar 78, Sudhindra 4-58)

Swapnil Asnodkar, Goa's captain, crafted a patient 78 to help them gain the first-innings lead against Madhya Pradesh at Indore. Asnodkar dropped anchor, gritting it out for more than six hours, and shared an important 90-run partnership with his namesake Rohit Asnodkar (34). Tadhuri Sudhindra was the most successful MP bowler with 4 for 58. Mudassar Pasha and Amit Pal led MP's response with a 69-run opening stand before Pasha fell at the end of the day.

Tripura 275 and 50 for 4 lead Jharkhand 310 (Lal 63, Kumar 51, Chanda 4-77) by 15 runs

Jharkhand wicketkeeper Neeraj Kumar held the lower-order together to inch his side to the first-innings lead against Tripura at Agartala. Santosh Lal, overnight on 50, added only 13 more to his score but Kumar's 113-ball 51 propelled the lower order. Mihir Diwakar, Shahid Khan and Raj Kumar Yadav - Nos. 9,10 and 11 - added 70 between them to give Kumar support. Tripura were in trouble in their second innings, reduced to 50 for 4 when stumps were drawn.