Bengal sneak ahead in Siliguri scrap
Bengal 107 (V Mohanty 6-28) and 0 for 0 lead Orissa 99 (Sarkar 5-31) by 8 runs
Twenty wickets fell on a dramatic opening day in Siliguri as Sourav Sarkar, the medium-pacer, helped Bengal sneak ahead by eight runs in the first innings. Orissa, who chose to field first, had a near-perfect bowling session, bundling Bengal out for 107 but their batsmen surrendered the advantage, collapsing for 99 in 38.4 overs. Basanth Mohanty, the debutant medium-pacer for Orissa, stole the show with 6 for 28 in just 8.3 overs, but he was overshadowed by Sarkar's maiden five-wicket haul. Bengal's openers played out the final 1.2 overs without any further loss.
Punjab 214 for 1 (Goel 121*, Inder 84*) v Baroda
A 201-run stand between Karan Goel and Ravi Inder put Punjab in firm control on the first day of their match against Baroda at the Gandhi Sports Complex Ground in Amritsar. Baroda's decision to field first was followed by an early wicket, when Ravneet Ricky fell in the eighth over, but Goel and Inder ensured it was only a false dawn. Goel notched up his maiden first-class hundred, with the help of 16 fours, while Inder gave him good company by carting 13 hits to the boundary.
Hyderabad 52 for 5 trail Andhra 159 (Ojha 3-43) by 107 runs
It was a bowlers day out in Uppal as Andhra gained the upperhand in their derby against Hyderabad. Choosing to bat first, Andhra managed only 159 but their bowlers, led by medium-pacer P Vijay Kumar, reduced Hyderabad to a perilous 52 for 5 by the end of the day. Hemal Watekar and Gnaneshwara Rao boosted the Andhra innings before Bodapati Sumanth eked out some runs with the tail. Kumar and Kalyankrishna, the new-ball bowlers, then responded splendidly to rattle Hyderabad's top order, reducing them to 18 for 4. Arjun Yadav, the captain, warded off further trouble and ground out a 78-ball 15 to keep Hyderabad in the hunt.
Mumbai 290 for 9 (Rahane 90, Sharma 62, Pankaj 5-67) v Rajasthan
Mumbai's decision to bat first backfired as Pankaj Singh's five-wicket haul restricted them to 290 for 9 at the end of the first day in Jhalawar. Pankaj, the tall fast bowler who has been a consistent domestic performer over the years, snapped up his fourth five-wicket haul to break the backbone of the Mumbai middle order. He struck with the wicket of Sahil Kukreja early and went on to dismiss Amol Muzumdar, the captain, Ramesh Powar, the centurion in the previous game, Vinayak Samant and Iqbal Abdulla. It was mainly thanks to a fighting 90 from Ajinkya Rahane, the opener, and 62 from Rohit Sharma that Mumbai stayed afloat.
Himachal Pradesh 10 for 1 trail Tamil Nadu 234 (Badrinath 111, Thakur 6-34) by 224 runs
S Badrinath's 111 propped up Tamil Nadu on the opening day in Chennai but it was Ashok Thakur, with 6 for 34, who seized the initiative for Himachal Pradesh. Tamil Nadu seemed to be making the most of winning the toss as Badrinath and K Vasudevadas added 97 for the third wicket but Thakur, the medium-pacer, got stuck into the middle order. Tamil Nadu lost their last eight wickets for 89 runs with Badrinath the last man to fall after reaching his 14th first-class hundred.
Delhi 23 for 1 trail Maharashtra 219 (Kanitkar 67, Bhatia 5-) by 196 runs
Rajat Bhatia grabbed his maiden first-class five-for to dismiss Maharashtra to 219 on the first day in Nagothane. After Maharashtra had recovered from the loss of their first wicket in the second over of the day, Bhatia exploited the inconsistent bounce on the track and got five middle-order batsmen to edge to the waiting slips. Only a stodgy half-century from Hrishikesh Kanitkar and handy contributions from Vishal Bhilare and Kedar Jadhav got Maharashtra past 200. (Click here to read the full report.)
Saurashtra 229 for 8 (Vinay Kumar 5-70) v Karnataka
Medium-pacer R Vinay Kumar grabbed his fifth five-wicket haul, which included his 100th first-class wicket, as Karnataka kept Saurashtra down to 229 for 8 on the opening day of the fifth-round clash in Mysore. Karnataka's decision to field first paid off as their bowlers picked up wickets at regular intervals. Almost all the Saurashtra batsmen got starts but none went on to score a half-century. Kumar and his opening partner NC Aiyappa accounted for seven of the eight wickets to fall, with left-arm spinner Sunil Joshi claiming the other.