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December 7, 2011
Half-centuries from Rishi Dhawan and Amit Kumar down the order put Himachal Pradesh in an excellent position to qualify for the knockout stages day against Kerala in Kannur. Having begun the day on 243 for 2, HP lost four quick wickets but Dhawan and Kumar seized the momentum back for the visitors with a 146-run stand for the seventh wicket. Dhawan was unlucky to be out for 99, while Sharma remained unbeaten on 51 as HP declared on 452 for 8. Kerala were left to face a tricky phase of 11 overs and lost Abhishek Hegde early before ending the second day on 34 for 1.
A career-best 189 not out from Ranjit Paradkar, his third first-class hundred, helped Group A points leaders Vidarbha recover from 232 for 8 to post 382 in their first innings against Andhra in Cuddapah. Paradkar found an able ally in No.9, Akshay Wakhare, who was happy to block one end up and let Paradkar do most of the scoring as they added 150 runs together. Wakhare faced 182 balls to make 38, allowing Paradkar to go past his previous best of 178. Their stand was finally broken by Syed Sahabuddin, who ended up with figures 3 for 40 from 31.1 overs. Andhra played out the three overs they were left to face without incident, and will resume on 8 for no loss on the third day.
Led by Penta Rao and Soumyaranjan Swain, Services took a first-innings lead over Tripura in Agartala. Services were in early trouble in Agartala at 49 for 3 and then 98 for 4, but Swain and Rao righted the ship with a partnership of 98 before Swain was caught behind for 60 to give part-timer Debabrata Chowdhury his maiden first-class wicket. Rao battled on, now in the company of wicketkeeper Sarabjit Singh, and the pair took their side to 246 for 5, giving them a four-run lead with two days remaining, with Rao unbeaten on 85.
Teenager B Sandeep's second first-class hundred lifted Hyderabad to 311 and kept them in the hunt for the second knockout berth from Group B. Jammu & Kashmir, who have no chance of qualifying, progressed to 156 for 4 on the second day at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium. Starting the day on 94, Sandeep progressed to his hundred but his wicket, caught off Raman Dutta for 112, sparked a panic. Hyderabad lost their last six wickets for 39 runs as Dutta was ran through the middle and lower orders to pick up 6 for 79. J&K's openers started strongly before left-arm spinner Lalith Mohan removed four of the top five batsmen with just 91 on the board. The two Singhs, Ian Dev and Hardeep then carried J&K to the close of play without any further losses.
Maharashtra, who have already qualied for the next stage, were in trouble against Assam, having slumped to 114 for 5 in pursuit of the home side's 272 in Guwahati. Assam's total was set-up opener Dheeraj Jadhav, who made a painstaking 105 from 364 balls in a shade less than nine hours. His fellow opener Pallavkumar Das made 50, but no one else managed more than 29. Left-arm spinner Akshya Darekar was the pick of the bowlers, taking 5 for 65 from 35 overs. Arup Das ripped out Maharashtra's top three for just 15. Two more wickets fell to reduce the visitors to 67 for 5, before Keda Jadhav and Ankit Bawane steadied the innings.
Goa's chances of progressing to the next round effectively ended after they were bowled out for 189 and conceded a 29-run first-innings lead to last-placed Jharkhand in Jamshedpur. Goa were in trouble from the start, stuttering to 28 for 4 and then 80 for 7 before Robin D'Souza and Amit Yadav staged a rear-guard action, lifting their side within sight of Jharkhand's total before legspinner Samar Quadri had D'Souza caught for 54. Quadri then knocked over the last two wickets to finish with 5 for 43. Jharkhand's openers added 42 to extend their lead to 71.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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