November 14, 2000

Srivastava, Seth enter record books with mighty stand

A record 249 run ninth wicket partnership between Ankit Srivastava and Kapil Seth was the highlight of the second day of Madhya Pradesh's Central Zone Ranji Trophy clash against Vidarbha at the Nehru Stadium in Indore. After Madhya Pradesh declared at a formidable 552/8, a deadly spell by medium pacer Jai Prakash Yadav saw Vidarbha capitulate to 157 by close of play.

Madhya Pradesh resumed this morning at 317/8. The ninth wicket pair which had come together at 276 were fortuitously separated four and a quarter hours later when Srivastava retired hurt on 204 (237 balls, 30 fours, 1 six). In the meantime their partnership of 249 had surpassed the existing national record of 245, standing in the name of Vijay Hazare and ND Nagarwalla for Maharashtra against Baroda at Pune sixtyone seasons ago. The world record of 283 by Messrs. Chapman and Warren for Derbyshire in 1910 remained agonisingly out of reach.

However a total of 276 runs were added for the ninth wicket - albeit with the involvement of three batsmen - as Seth went on to figure in a 27 run unbroken stand with last man Narendra Hirwani before skipper Chandrakant Pandit decided to close shutters. No. 10 batsman Seth helped himself to an unbeaten 125 (167 balls, 14 fours, 3 sixes). Umesh Patel was the pick of the Vidarbha bowlers, nine of whom were used, taking 3/102.

Opening bowler Harvinder Sodhi drew first blood for MP, removing Adwait Manohar in the seventh over. But Vivek Naidu and Shailesh Harbade took Vidarbha through to 70/1 at tea and there was no hint of the procession that was to follow. The 68 run second wicket stand ended when Harbade was caught by Pandit off Yadav, the first of his seven victims. Madhya Pradesh leg spinner Narendra Hirwani was not even pressed into service as the last nine wickets tumbled for 78. Vidarbha plunged to 157 all out in just 43 overs, Yadav finishing with 7/31.