Karnataka debutant Ronit More destroys Goa
Medium-pacer Ronit More grabbed a six-wicket haul on debut and helped Karnataka skittle Goa for 54 at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore. Karnataka took just 12.3 overs to chase the total, meaning the match lasted just 33 overs. More, who had not played any first-class or List A game before the match, ran through the Goa line-up, and finished with 6 for 18 in 6.3 overs. Reagan Pinto was the only Goa batsman to reach double figures.
L Balaji took a five-wicket haul before Dinesh Karthik and S Anirudha completed an easy win for Tamil Nadu over Andhra Pradesh at the Rajinder Singh Institute Ground in Bangalore. Balaji helped bowl Andhra out for 247, and then Karthik scored an unbeaten century as Tamil Nadu reached the target in just 39.5 overs. Balaji struck two early blows after putting Andhra in to bat. Prasanth Kumar guided the innings with his 73 off 87 balls, and Andhra were steady through the middle overs. Balaji came back to take late wickets and prevent a final onslaught; Andhra were bowled out in the 47th over. Tamil Nadu did not have much trouble chasing the target. Anirudha gave them a quick start with his 94 off 81 balls, and Karthik completed the job with his 103 not out off 83 balls.
Hyderabad chased down 267 against Kerala, with two wickets to spare, at the Jain International Residential School Ground in Bangalore. Kerala, after choosing to bat, were propelled by a century from No. 3 Rohan Prem. Prem finished with 113 not out, and the rest of the line-up batted around him to put up a total of 266 for 6. T Suman and Ravi Teja got the chase off to a solid start with a 53-run stand, before four quick wickets put Kerala ahead. However, Akshath Reddy kept the innings going and, with wicketkeeper Ibrahim Khaleel, did enough to steer his side home. He made an unbeaten hundred, while Khaleel made 54, both at better than a run-a-ball, enabling Hyderabad to eventually reach their target with nine balls to spare.
Delhi's medium-pacers shot Jammu and Kashmir out for 120 to give their side a 125-run win at the Feroz Shah Kotla. Delhi had 245 to defend and Parvinder Awana had J & K* stuttering at 18 for 2 with two early wickets. A wicket from Ashish Nehra and two from Pradeep Sangwan made that 33 for 5. Rajat Bhatia got into the act, taking three wickets to complete the job. Only four J & K batsmen managed to get to double figures, with Hardeep Singh's 40 the top score. Delhi's total had been built on a solid performance from the top order. Unmukt Chand scored 46, Mohit Sharma got 36 and Mithun Manhas scored 41 to set a solid base. There was a stutter in the middle overs but Sangwan and Nehra got some late runs to lift the total to 245. It proved to be more than enough.
Himachal Pradesh won a hard-fought match against Services by 18 runs at the Model Sports Complex in Delhi. Himachal chose to bat and were off to a rocky start, before Prashant Chopra, Paras Dogra and S Sriram, in combination, put on partnerships of 102 and 98 to take them to 291. Dogra was the top scorer with 114. Services' chase was built around an unbeaten hundred from captain Yashpal Singh and they looked the firm favourites when he was involved in a 106-run stand with Sanjeev Mishra, scored at almost seven an over. However, three late wickets within the space of 11 balls pegged Services back and they fell just short.
A rapid half-century from Amitoze Singh helped Punjab chase down 244 against Haryana at the Palam A Ground in Delhi. Haryana chose to bat and were carried to 243 for 6 on the back of a solid showing from their top order. Opener Nitin Saini and Sandeep Godara put on a century stand, before Sachin Rana scored a quick, unbeaten 59. Punjab's chase had several contributors. Karan Goel and Gurkirat Ahluwalia made scores in the 40s, Mandeep Singh and Bipul Sharma hit smaller cameos and Amitoze provided the finishing touches with a boundary-studded 76: he hit seven fours and two sixes in his 56-ball knock, ensuring Punjab cantered home in the 47th over, with four wickets to spare.
Tripura never recovered from medium-pacer Arup Das' early blows and ended up losing to Assam by eight wickets at the Jadavpur University Complex in Kolkata. Tripura were put in, and Das took three wickets to have them struggling at 61 for 4. They ended up being bowled out for 180 and Assam chased the total in just 38 overs. Vinayak Samant's 45 was the only significant score in Tripura's innings, and they did not last the 50 overs. Dheeraj Jadhav top-scored in the chase with 75, while Pallavkumar Das also got a half-century.
A Sourav Ganguly-led Bengal side put in an all-round performance to comprehensively beat Orissa at Eden Gardens. Bengal's bowlers maintained a tight grip on Orissa through their innings, and bowled them out for 201. Bengal lost three early wickets in the chase but Wriddhiman Saha and Anustup Majumdar shared a 190-run fourth-wicket stand to take them home in the 35th over. Majumdar scored his third List A century, getting 100 off 93 balls. Left-arm spinner Iresh Saxena was the standout bowler for Bengal, taking three wickets and conceding just 20 runs in his 10 overs.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar and RP Singh ran through Railways' line-up, helping Uttar Pradesh successfully defend 186 at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Ground in Nagpur. UP chose to bat** and none of their batsmen other than Mohammad Kaif, wicketkeeper Amir Khan and Bhuvneshwar could really contribute much, resulting in them being bowled out for 186. Krishnakant Upadhyay was the most effective bowler for Railways, taking 4 for 39. Bhuvneshwar and RP Singh then proceeded to tear apart Railways' top order, reducing them to 27 for 5, before a half-century stand between Faiz Fazal and Ashish Yadav got Railways briefly back in the match. But once the partnership was broken, UP continued to peg away at regular, short intervals to edge home, bowling Haryana out for 169 in 47.2 overs.
A team performance helped Rajashtan beat Vidarbha by three wickets at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium in Jamtha, Nagpur. Rajasthan were asked to field and their bowlers responded, sharing the wickets around in tidy spells to restrict the hosts to 206. Only Urvesh Patel could make a contribution of note for Vidarbha: 72, the highest score in the match. Five of Rajashtan's top six got into double figures in the chase, which was enough to make sure the moderate target was overhauled. Dishant Yagnik was Rajasthan's top scorer, putting together a patient 51 to set up the chase, before being run out.
*February 21, 18:24: This report originally said Delhi had Assam stuttering. It has been corrected
**February 21, 18:24: This report originally said UP chose to bowl. It has been corrected