Vidarbha eye semi-final berth with Fazal, Wankhade tons

Vidarbha 246 and 431 for 6 (Fazal 119, Wankhade 107, Saxena 3-106) lead Kerala 176 (Jalaj 40, Gurbani 5-38) by 501 runs

Centuries from Faiz Fazal and Apoorv Wankhade swelled Vidarbha's lead to 501 as they finished on 431 for 6 at stumps against Kerala on the fourth day in Surat. With a first-innings lead already under their belt, declaration wasn't a priority for Vidarbha who piled on 354 runs in 94 overs on the penultimate day to remain on course for securing a semi-final berth.

Having finished on 77 for 1 on day three, Vidarbha captain Fazal converted his overnight half-century into a 209-ball 119 - his 16th first-class century - adding 90 for the second wicket with Akshay Wakhare, who could only add 23 runs to his overnight score of 7. Fazal, however, stitched together another 74 runs with Wasim Jaffer (58) for the third wicket, before being caught behind off left-arm spinner KC Akshay, who also dismissed Wankhade towards the end of the day. Having come in at No. 6, Wankhade raced to his maiden first-class century that anchored a 135-run stand with Ganesh Satish (65) and culminated in a 94-ball 107 that featured six fours and five sixes.

Offspinner Jalaj Saxena accounted for three of Vidarbha's top five, while medium-pacer MD Nidheesh picked up the solitary wicket of Jaffer off his 18 overs. Vidarbha's Akshay Wadkar and Karn Sharma kept vigil on at stumps with an unbeaten 20 and 4 respectively.