Himachal cling on for dramatic draw
Himachal Pradesh 343 and 83 for 5 (Bisla 24*, Ishant Sharma 4-44) drew with Delhi 75 and by 482 for 6 dec. (Chopra 215)
Aakash Chopra's double-century set up a declaration and Ishant Sharma's burst threatened to bowl Himachal Pradesh out inside 36 overs, but Maninder Bisla and Barun Sharma hung on desperately for 18.1 overs to bat out a draw, which gave them the three points for the first-innings lead they had attained.
Chopra, who started the day at 146, continued to pile on the runs and reached his double-century with a six off Sarandeep Singh. Delhi declared as soon as Chopra got out for 213 and Ishant took four wickets to get Himachal down to 34 for 5 in the 17th over. But Bisla, who has impressed with his fighting innings in the middle and lower order, in company with Barun denied Delhi till stumps.
Delhi now have 12 points from four matches and are placed second behind Maharashtra in Group A.
Karnataka 329 and 153 for 2 (Uthappa 54, Shinde 50*) drew with Rajasthan 393 and 131 (Joshi 4-25, Raghu 2-21)
On a dramatic final day, the Karnataka spinners bowled Rajasthan out for 131, which set them a target of 196 in 27 overs. Robin Uthappa got the chase off to a flier, scoring 54 off 38 balls, but once he got out the asking-rate proved too much for the ones to follow.
Earlier veteran spinner Sunil Joshi, who had taken six wickets in the first innings, set the match up. Opening the bowling, Joshi took four wickets to finish a 10-wicket haul and bowl Rajasthan out in 75 overs. Six of the Rajasthan batsmen failed to make it to double digits. KP Appanna and C Raghu took two wickets each.
Rajasthan got their first points in the season, but they were still at the bottom of Group A after Himachal notched up three points against Delhi.
Baroda 331 and 148 beat Uttar Pradesh 209 and 225 (Gupta 50*, Yusuf Pathan 4-68, Pawar 3-83) by 48 runs
Praveen Gupta followed his five-wicket haul with a valiant half-century down the order, but the Baroda spinners - Yusuf Pathan and Rajesh Pawar - proved too much for Uttar Pradesh who fell 48 short in their chase of 274. Resuming at 58 for 0, UP got the worst possible start to the day with Tanmay Srivastava run out in the first over of the day. Irfan Pathan got Baroda two breakthroughs before the spinners took charge.
Pawar got Suresh Raina and Mohammad Kaif while Yusuf scythed through the lower-middle order as UP lost eight wickets in the first session of the day. Gupta strung together partnerships with Amir Khan and Sudeep Tyagi, but there was just too much left for the last wickets to do. Yusuf took 4 for 68 to end up with match figures of 9-99 and Pawar took 3-83. Baroda now have 14 points from three matches and lead the Group B by a fair margin, with Andhra at second place with nine.
Bengal 513 for 6 dec. and 45 for 1 beat Punjab 241 and 315 (Sohal 95, Bose 3-55, Sarkar 3-81) by nine wickets
The Bengal medium-pace trio of Ranadeb Bose, Sourav Sarkar and Ashok Dinda took three wickets each to bowl Punjab out for 315 in their second innings and set an easy win for Bengal. Punjab started the day at 64 for 1, still 208 behind Bengal, and Bose struck in his first over of the day to start Bengal's march.
Although every batsman in Punjab's middle order got a start, only Sunny Sohal went on to play a big innings - 95, which was his maiden first-class fifty. His was always a vain effort, scored in company of the tail and at a strike-rate of 107.95, but he prevented an innings defeat, which would have given Bengal a bonus point. Bengal could have still gained the extra point, but they lost one wicket in getting the 44-run target. The bonus point would have taken them to nine points and placed them at joint-second with Andhra.
Orissa 298 and 103 for 1 (Pati 52, Das 40*) beat Hyderabad 240 and 160 (Mohanty 5-25) by nine wickets
Orissa scored their first points in the Super League as Debasis Mohanty's five-for set up a comprehensive nine-wicket win over Hyderabad. Hyderabad resumed the day at 143 for 5, 85 in front, but Mohanty struck with the fourth ball of the morning and three more times to bowl them out for 160, an addition of just 17 today.
The Orissa openers - Bikas Pati and Shiv Sunder Das - gave them just the start they needed as they knocked off the required 103 with ease. But, at the scores level, Pati got run out to become the first wicket to fall. It meant Orissa missed out on the bonus point, which would have taken them clear of Hyderabad at the bottom of the table. The teams are not joint-last in Group B with five points each.
Maharashtra 451 and 139 for 3 (Kanitkar 50*) drew with Mumbai 436 (Samant 22, Fallah 4-114)
For all practical purposes, the derby at the Wankhede ended nine overs before lunch on the final day, when Maharashtra claimed the last Mumbai wicket to secure a 15-run first-innings lead that would give them three points. Mumbai, who started the day 61 behind Maharashtra's 451, lost Ramesh Powar for 106 early in the day. A tense period followed as Vinayak Samant and debutant Murtuza Hussain slowly inched towards Maharashtra's total. They added 39 for the ninth wicket, but when Samant got out Mumbai were 18 adrift and the last wicket could add only three.
Hrishikesh Kanitkar, playing his first match this season, scored an unbeaten 50 to ensure there were no mishaps as Maharashtra grabbed three points and retained the top position in Group A. They now have 15 points from four games.
Saurashtra 211 (Ramkumar 4-68, Suresh 3-19) and 105 for 2 drew with Tamil Nadu 531 for 2 dec.
Tamil Nadu duly bowled Saurashtra out for 211 to ensure that they secured the first-innings point. Rain and bad light had slowed down their march after they had declared their first innings at 531 for 2 but C Suresh, the left-arm spinner, hastened the end. Resuming at 120 for 5, Saurashtra added only 91 and were bowled out in the first session itself. R Ramkumar finished with 4 for 68 and Suresh took three wickets for 19. The second innings was slow progress as they scored only 105 in 64 overs.
Saurashtra batted out the remaining 64 overs with ease in the second innings and gained one point for the draw.