Jiwanjot, Sandeep take Punjab closer to fourth win
Punjab 215 and 149 for 1 (Jiwanjot 80*) need another 55 runs to beat Rajasthan 222 and 196 (Sandeep 5-57)
Jiwanjot Singh made a double hundred on first-class debut, a 158 in his second game, and is now carrying Punjab towards their fourth outright win in five matches. He hit 15 fours in his unbeaten 80, and Punjab needed just 55 more in Mohali against the defending champions Rajasthan. Sandeep Sharma, the India Under-19 quick bowler, earlier took five wickets to dismiss Rajasthan for 196. Sandeep debuted in Ranji Trophy last season. This season, he's taken 4 for 38 v Railways, 7 for 25 v Saurashtra and now 5 for 57 v Rajasthan. Baltej Singh also took three wickets with Vineet Saxena's 41 being the highest score for Rajasthan.
Bengal 201 and 47 for 0 need another 344 runs to beat Mumbai 297 and 294 for 5 dec (Hiken 118, Nayar 73*)
Hiken Shah continued his golden run this season with his third hundred in three Ranji games. He's also made 92 against England XI, and three more centuries in the Safi Darashah tournament in Karnataka for MCA XI. Abhishek Nayar made an unbeaten half-century as Mumbai captain Rohit Sharma declared on 294 for 5 in search of an outright win. Rohit had lasted 20 deliveries with the bat, going bowled to Laxmi Shukla for 14. Set a target of 391, Bengal motored to 47 for 0 in 16 overs by stumps.
Railways 157 for 1 (Shukla 74*) trail Saurashtra 576 for 9 dec (Jadeja 331, Makvana 100*, Rathod 5-98) by 419 runs
Saurashtra batted for about an hour into the third day, with Ravindra Jadeja finally going for 331 and offspinner Kamlesh Makvana reaching his century. Former Saurashtra medium-pacer Hardik Rathod picked up five wickets but Saurashtra posted 576 before declaring. Railways were steady in their reply, reaching 157 for 1 by stumps. Shivakant Shukla was unbeaten on 74 and V Cheluvaraj was giving him company on 49. Jaydev Unadkat took the only wicket to fall. Railways need an improbable 420 to take the first-innings lead on the final day, but if they can avoid getting bowled out, both teams will get just a point each.
Hyderabad 291 for 4 (Vihari 79, Akshath Reddy 79, B Sandeep 61*) trail Gujarat 566 by 275 runs
Hyderabad were fighting for the first-innings lead in Valsad, reaching 291 for 4 in reply to Gujarat's mammoth 566. Akshath Reddy made another half-century, and again failed to convert it into a big hundred. Hanuma Vihari contributed 79 before falling, but Bavanaka Sandeep remained unbeaten on 61 and along with Syed Quadri (33*) kept Hyderabad hopes alive with the visitors still 275 behind. Four Gujarat bowlers picked up a wicket each.