Mumbai v MP, Ranji Trophy 2015-16, semi-final, 5th day February 17, 2016

Mumbai enter final on lead in Cuttack run fest

ESPNcricinfo staff

Madhya Pradesh 227 (Ojha 79, Sandhu 5-43) and 361 for 5 (Ojha 113, Harpreet 105) drew with Mumbai 371 (Iyer 90, Tare 68, Sakhure 5-137) and 426 (Suryakumar 115, Tare 109, Harpreet 3-55)

File photo: Aditya Tare marked his return from a thumb injury with a century in the second innings to help build Mumbai's lead © PTI

Mumbai made it to the Ranji Trophy final for the first time in three seasons, but were denied an outright win courtesy centuries from Naman Ojha (113) and Harpreet Singh (105). Madhya Pradesh, who were set an improbable 571 in little over four sessions, ended on 361 for 5 when both set of players shook hands to bring an end to a high-scoring clash at the DRIEMS ground in Cuttack.

MP started the fifth day at 99 for 2, with Mumbai having an opportunity to pocket full points. They had a wicket in the first hour when Aditya Shrivastava (68) was caught behind off Badre Alam, the pacer, to give them an opening. But it was a toil from there on as Ojha, who had the most runs this season without a century, brought up his 15th first-class ton during the course of a 159-run stand for the fourth wicket with Harpreet.

Ojha, who struck 13 fours and a six during his 185-ball vigil, fell to the part-time offspin of Suryakumar Yadav to once again lift Mumbai's hopes of running through the lower middle order. But Harpreet frustrated the bowlers and brought up his second century of the season shortly after the tea interval. He finished the season as the leading run-getter for the side with 750 runs in 15 innings.

With interest surrounding MP's second innings dying down soon after Harpreet's century, the match meandered to a close at the start of the mandatory overs, as Mumbai sealed their final berth on the back of two dominating displays with the bat. While Shreyas Iyer hit 90 and 58 in his two outings, Aditya Tare, the captain, who missed the quarterfinal with a thumb injury, and Suryakumar hit centuries in the second innings to build on a 144-run lead that was taken on the back of Balwinder Sadhu's five-wicket haul.

Mumbai will play Saurashtra, in what will be a repeat of the 2012-13 final, at the MCA Stadium in Pune starting on February 24.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • J on February 19, 2016, 12:20 GMT

    Iyer should really get a look in for the Indian team after what he's done in the last 2 years. Rahanes spot in ODI's could be his.

  • Abhijith on February 19, 2016, 6:52 GMT

    Shreyas Iyer seriously needs to get fast tracked into the Indian team.It's perfect time too.India is playing tests only at home for upcoming 2 years.So, he could gain confidence and can also be secure about his place by the time the team tours outside.If not fast tracked, Dhawan will score a 100 in every 4th game in India and when we tour India will lose due to a bad start.

  • viraj on February 19, 2016, 3:31 GMT

    @SauravJain...relax...neither Jadeja nor Rohit/Rahane are going to play for Saurashtra and Mumbai respectively! They have their national duty which is currently more important, kindly make predictions based on available players :)

  • Anup on February 18, 2016, 11:43 GMT

    @sauravjain: Jadeja is in Asia cup squad and certain to be picked in the XI. There is no way he can be relieved by BCCI. Mumbai are overwhelming favorites, with or without Jadeja in Saurashtra team. Pujara and Unadkat need to fire if they are to challenge Mumbai.

  • Saurav on February 18, 2016, 10:48 GMT

    Who will win depends upon whether Sir RAVINDRA Jadeja will be relieved by BCCI to play for Saurashtra.

  • Saurav on February 18, 2016, 10:31 GMT

    @Tanstell87 When Test greats like Hashim Amla,ABD,Faf,Clarke could not face and could not even stay in front of Jadeja,then how can you justify Rohit Sharma(who failed to play SA ordinary spinners) can play RAVINDRA JADEJA. Yes interesting to see who would win between Rahane and Jadeja. But overall Jadeja is better utility player than both.

  • Saurav on February 18, 2016, 10:22 GMT

    Jadeja the one man army for Saurashtra should play in Ranji Trophy final to lead Saurashtra win their first Ranji title. JADDU is surity for wc and Asia cup and he has proven best in all formats after comeback,his ICC Rankings show that he has improved significantly. Now Jadeja should beat Mumbai in Ranji final.

  • Anup on February 18, 2016, 9:24 GMT

    Mumbai's full strength team will look like this: Herwadkar, Iyer, Rahane, Rohit, S.Yadav/Lad, Tare, Nayar, Abdullah, Shardul, Dhawal, Sandhu.

    If Mumbai go on to win the Ranji, it would be great if this team is played against ROI in Irani Trophy.

  • Tanmay on February 18, 2016, 7:57 GMT

    ABHIYOG ....your team is not far behind they were champs for two seasons. Me being a Mumbaikar can tell you one thing, Mumbai plays khadoos cricket & are mentally strong. Credit should be given to Aditya Tare who has lead from front. Mumbai-Saurarshtra will be a superb final...Jadeja or no Jadeja, Mumbai to be champs for 41st time.

  • leftyb7421825 on February 18, 2016, 6:50 GMT

    Mumbai certainly go to the final as the hot favorites because of their past record in the Ranji Trophy over the years but Saurashtra seem to be no push over.With the likes of Pujara and Unadkat in their ranks Saurashtra should give Mumbai a good fight.The recent performances by Pujara, Unadkat and Co en route to their march to the finals is a clear indication that a well contested final is in the offing.Hope the National selectors take notice of the splendid performances by players like Iyer,Unadkat who have been outstanding throughout. Best of luck to both the teams!!

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