Rajasthan on verge of massive win
Rajasthan were in position to complete a humiliating defeat of Hyderabad inside three days at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur, after the latter crumbled to 64 for 6 a day after being bowled out for 21 to set the record for the lowest total in Ranji Trophy history. Trailing by 382, Hyderabad lost both their openers with only four runs on the board. A partnership of 24 between Anirudh Singh and Arjun Yadav followed, but it would prove to be only a minor lull in proceedings. Debutant Deepak Chahar, who took eight wickets in the first innings, followed it up with another three wickets, giving him 11 in the match so far.
Rajasthan's total of 403 was built around former India batsman Hrishikesh Kanitkar's unbeaten 193. He batted for almost nine hours, facing 377 balls and hitting 22 fours. Robin Bist kept Kanitkar company in a stand of 107 for the third wicket before he fell to Pagadala Naidu. At that stage Rajasthan were 267 for 3, but the rest of the batting failed to click, with no one getting more than 23, to leave Kanitkar stranded seven short of a double hundred. Alfred Absolem took five for 78, his fifth career five-wicket haul.
A 189-run stand between Sangram Atitkar and Ankit Bawne put Maharashtra in control of their game against Jammu & Kashmir at the Gandhi Memorial Science College Ground in Jammu. Atitkar made 140 and Bawne an unbeaten 132 as Maharashtra ended the day on 457 for 4, giving them a lead of 185. The pair came together after Kedar Jadhav had played an entertaining cameo - smashing five fours and a six in his 28 - and proceeded to dominate the bowling, scoring at a tick under four runs an over. Medium pacer Raman Dutta finally broke the partnership when he had Atitkar leg-before, but there was to be no respite for J&K as Bawne and captain Rohit Motwani upped the tempo in a 90-run partnership from just 20 overs.
Madhya Pradesh threw away a strong start against Goa but ended the day with a 158-run first innings lead at the Holkar Cricket Stadium in Indore. Three of the top four batsmen - Naman Ohja, Monish Mishra and Devendra Bundela - made half-centuries, but MP lost their last seven wickets for 108 runs to finish with 328. Ohja and Mishra added 132 before Shadab Jakati bowled Mishra for a fluent 71 that contained 11 fours and a six. MP captain Bundela and Ohja had added a further 52 when Harshad Gadeka had Ohja caught behind 12 short of his hundred. Abbas Ali threw his bat around to make 26 from 20, but his dismissal triggered a mini-collapse as four wickets fell for 25 runs. Ankit Sharma and Bundela stemmed the rot with a 48-run partnership, and Sharma and Anand Rajan put on 31, to take MP past 300.
Medium pacer Suraj Yadav picked up 6 for 86 on debut but a century from Sreekumar Nair pushed Kerala to 454 against Services at the Model Sports Complex in Delhi. Nair made 137 and shared in two big partnerships down the order. He added 106 with Padmanabhan Prasanth for the seventh wicket and 94 with Sony Cheruvathur, whose 54 was his maiden half-century in first class cricket. Cheruvathur faced 92 deliveries and struck seven fours. In reply, Services were 16 for no loss at close of play.
Varun Aaron took 5 for 17 as Tripura collapsed for 73 against Jharkhand at the Maharaja Bir Bikram College Stadium in Agartala. Made to follow-on, Tripura slumped to 50 for 4, leaving them 212 runs behind Jharkhand, who were bowled out for 335, with Rahul Shukla top scoring with 72. Aaron took four of the first five wickets to fall in Tripura's first innings, as they found themselves in a deep hole at 35 for 5. Captain Rajib Dutta was the only batsman to show some fight, remaining unbeaten on 24. In the second innings, Tripura lost both openers for 22 before legspinner Samar Quadri added two late wickets to leave them on the brink of an innings defeat.
Andimani Pradeep led Andhra Pradesh to 370 in their first innings against Vidharba at the Vidharba Cricket Association Ground in Nagpur. Pradeep was the last man to fall, bowled by Shrikant Wagh for 94. His 80-run partnership with captain Khatib Sahabuddin helped propel AP past 300. Wagh was the pick of the bowlers, taking 5 for 77. Vidarbha were 43 for no loss at stumps, with both openers Akshay Kolhar and Amit Paunikar on 20.