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November 19, 2011
Kerala thrashed Tripura by an innings and 53 runs at the Nehru Stadium in Kochi. Kerala had taken a first-innings lead on the second day and proceeded to make 316, thanks to Sony Cheruvathur's 77. Offspinner Udit Patel took 5 for 75 but Tripura were staring at a difficult task trying to stay alive in the game. As it turned out, they were bowled out for 124, worse than their first-innings performance. Kaushal Acharjee top-scored with 47 and the others capitulated; Cheruvathur, Prasanth Parameswaran and Padmanabhan Prasanth grabbed three wickets each to inflict a third straight defeat on Tripura.
Himachal Pradesh remained in a strong position against Andhra Pradesh at the Indira Gandhi Stadium in Vijaywada. A century from Paras Dogra had helped them go past Andhra's score on day two, and Varun Sharma held one end up on day three, reaching his own ton. Himachal, however, only managed to add 74 to their overnight score, getting bowled out for 341, a lead of 76. Andhra scored fluently in their second innings, opener G Shankara Rao leading the way with an unbeaten 96, but lost four wickets by the close. Vishal Bhatia grabbed two wickets and Abhinav Bali removed a set Venugopal Rao, who had added 94 with Shankara. At stumps, Andhra led by 100 with six wickets in hand, a tricky situation to be in heading into the final day.
A collective batting performance from Hyderabad put them in control against Assam at the Nehru Stadium in Guwahati. Centuries from opener Akshath Reddy and Syed Qadri helped them gain a first-innings lead of 247, with support from T Suman, who made 88, and cameos from Hanuman Vihari and Ibrahim Khaleel. Reddy added 145 for the second wicket with Suman, taking Hyderabad past the Assam score and Qadri built important stands with the rest to take his team to 474 for 6 declared during his unbeaten 107. Assam were dealt an early blow in their second innings, Amit Sinha falling in the first over.
Goa extended their advantage over Jammu and Kashmir at the Gandhi Memorial Science College Ground in Jammu. Having gained a lead of 21 in the first innings, they stretched it to 397 at stumps on the third day. Opener Sher Yadav made 118, striking 18 boundaries, and there were half-centuries from Reagan Pinto and wicketkeeper Rahul Keni. Goa were 268 for 7 at one stage and there was still an opening for J&K, but Keni added 51 with Amit Yadav for the eighth wicket and an unbeaten 56 for the last wicket. The two most likely results are a Goa win or a draw, with the visitors taking three points.
Maharashtra dominated the third day against Jharkhand at the Anant Kanhere Maidan in Nasik, putting themselves in an excellent position to win the game. In a combined bowling effort, they bowled out Jharkhand for 283 in the first innings, though the tail wagged - the last three wickets added 99. It wasn't enough to prevent Jharkhand from following on, however, and they slipped to 218 for 6 by stumps, only 44 ahead. Opener Manish Vardhan made a patient 88, adding 73 for the first wicket, but the Maharashtra bowlers struck at frequent intervals, cutting short any threatening partnership. Seamer Domnic Joseph picked up three wickets, including Vardhan and wicketkeeper SP Gautam, who made 39.
Vidarbha were in an excellent position to take a first-innings lead against Services at the Harbax Singh Stadium in Delhi. In response to Vidarbha's 508 for 6 declared, Services were struggling at 238 for 8 at stumps on the third day. Opener Jasvir Singh made 74 and Soumyaranjan Swain made 70 but Shrikant Wagh, Sandeep Singh and Ravi Jangid each grabbed two wickets to peg back Services, and take their team closer to a minimum of three points.
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