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November 3, 2008
Tamil Nadu 377 for 0 (Vijay 202*, Mukund 164*) v Maharashtra
Tamil Nadu's openers gave their team a perfect start to the new season, rattling off 377 runs in an unbroken stand at the Golf Club Ground in Nasik. M Vijay continued to build on his impressive showing in the Challenger Trophy, where he finished as the second-highest run-getter, scoring an unbeaten 202. Abhinav Mukund contributed 164, and the pair need 88 more to break the record for the opening stand in the Ranji Trophy - set by Raman Lamba and Ravi Sehgal against Himachal Pradesh in 1994-95.
Tamil Nadu's runs came at a healthy run-rate of 4.18; Vijay hit 23 fours and five sixes, and Mukund 19 fours and two sixes. Enamul Haque jnr, Maharashtra's recruit from Bangladesh, had a disappointing start, conceding 114 in 25 overs.
Karnataka 264 for 6 (Uthappa 131, Pawan 54, Kartik 3-65) v Railways
At the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore, newly-appointed captain Robin Uthappa led from the front for Karnataka, making 131 in a solid batting effort against Railways. Uthappa, the leading run-scorer in India Blue's triumph in the Challenger Trophy, chose to bat and vindicated his decision by putting on 157 for the first wicket with KB Pawan, who was dismissed for 54 by left-arm spinner Murali Kartik.
Ganesh Satish and C Raghu didn't last long, and Uthappa became Harvinder Singh's second wicket with the score at 221 for 4. Thilak Naidu and Bharat Chipli each scored 19 before falling to Kartik, who took 3 for 65 off his 24 overs. Karan Sharma also bowled 20 overs of spin, taking 1 for 56.
Gujarat 304 for 4 (Sunny 90*, Thaker 73*) v Saurashtra
A 144-run stand for the fifth wicket between Bhavik Thaker and Sunny Patel helped Gujarat, winners of the Plate League last season, to a comfortable 304 for 4 against 2007-08 Super League semi-finalists Saurashtra in Rajkot. Sunny scored 90 in that stand, with 17 fours in his unbeaten run-a-ball innings. At the other end, Thaker pushed to 73 off 147 balls, and both batsmen will look to score centuries and help their team to a big score on Tuesday.
Nilesh Modi and Parthiv Patel, the leading run-getters in Gujarat's Plate League success, failed to build on their starts after their team was asked to bat. Sandeep Jobanputra struck early for the hosts, getting Priyank Kirit Panchal for 4. Modi and Parthiv then put on 71 before Parthiv was out after a brisk 42 . Modi too scored 42 but, while Parthiv needed only 50 deliveries, Modi took 155. Niraj Patel made 36 but his dismissal left Gujarat in a spot of bother at 160 for 4. Thaker and Sunny, though, seized the advantage for their side.
Hyderabad 228 for 7 (Pai 78, Teja 71) v Orissa
Seventies from Dwaraka Ravi Teja and Anoop Pai took Hyderabad to 228 for 5 after they made a shaky start against Orissa at the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack. Tirumalsetti Suman was trapped leg before by Debasis Mohanty off the first ball of the day and it became 24 for 2 when Mohanty bowled Doddapaneni Rushi Raj in the 11th over. Teja and Arjun Yadav made a brief recovery, but Yadav was caught and bowled for 9 by left-arm medium-pacer Preetamjit Das.
Pai and Teja then added 79 for the third wicket. Teja was lbw to Preetamjit, who finished the day with 2 for 41 off 14 overs. Teja made 71, which included eight fours and a six. Wicketkeeper Abhinav Kumar chipped in with an unbeaten 48, but Hyderabad lost Pai, who made a 240-ball 78, in the final over of the day to Basanth Mohanty.
Andhra 222 for 4 (Reddy 89*) v Uttar Pradesh
LNP Reddy played anchor for Andhra against Uttar Pradesh with a slow, unbeaten 89 to guide his team to 222 for 4 on the first day in Meerut. Opener Hemal Watekar was the only batsman to score at a strike-rate of over 50 as Andhra went at a rate of 2.41 per over. Watekar was the first out, for 34 in an opening stand of 39, to left-arm spinner Praveen Gupta. ASK Varma scored only 7, caught behind off Gupta, and Bodapati Sumanth's 93-ball 26 was ended when he was caught off Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Captain Y Gnaneswara Rao was also out for 7; he put on 58 with Reddy. AG Pradeep then made an unbeaten 35 as he and Reddy helped his team to 222 for 4.
Punjab 237 for 5 (Sohal 110, Nanda 2-36, Sangwan 2-56) v Delhi
Defending champions Delhi played out a testing day of cricket at the Roshanara Club Ground. Punjab, put in to bat, made 237 for 5, with No. 3 Sunny Sohal scoring his maiden first-class ton. Left-arm seamer Pradeep Sangwan and legspinner Chetanya Nanda jolted Punjab with two wickets apiece, but an unbroken 61-run stand between Uday Kaul and Ankur Kakkar played out till stumps.
Mumbai 293 for 8 (Rahane 73, Rohit 62, Jaffer 60, Menaria 3-7) v Rajasthan
At the Brabourne Stadium, Rajasthan fought well to keep Mumbai down to 293 for 8 on the first day, Mumbai's innings was powered by a 106-run fourth-wicket stand between Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma, both of whom scored half-centuries. However, Ashok Menaria, a part-time left-arm slow bowler, took 3-1-7-3 on debut to leave the honours even.
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