Srinidhi Ramanujam is a sub-editor with ESPNcricinfo
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Mumbai 393 (Tamore 115, Jaiswal 100, Karan 4-46) and 533 for 4 dec (Jaiswal 181, Jaffer 127, Prince 2-92) drew with Uttar Pradesh 181 (Mavi 48, Deshpande 3-34, Kotian 3-35) - Mumbai qualify for the final on first-innings lead
Mumbai produced an all-round performance in what turned out to be a dull draw against Uttar Pradesh at the Just Cricket Academy, eventually qualifying for the final on the basis of a first-innings lead. They will now take on Madhya Pradesh - who beat Bengal by 174 runs in the other semi-final - in Bengaluru from June 22.
After initially being 213 ahead, Mumbai's overall lead stood at 746 runs by the time they decided to declare their second innings on 533 on the final afternoon. However, that Mumbai had all but made the final was certain at stumps on Day 4 itself, by when they were already 662 in front.
The chief architect of Mumbai's dominant performance was the young opener Yashasvi Jaiswal, who cracked two hundreds in the match with scores of 100 and 181 - his career-best first-class score, which included 23 fours and a six. That meant three consecutive centuries for Jaiswal in the tournament, after hitting 103 in the second innings of the quarter-final against Uttarakhand.
Mumbai also had other contributors with the bat, with wicketkeeper Hardik Tamore - who came in place of the injured Aditya Tare - utilising the opportunity and scoring 115 in his first match of the season. In their second innings, captain Prithvi Shaw hit an entertaining 64 while Armaan Jaffer contributed 127, his second hundred in three matches this season.
After posting 393 in the first innings on being inserted by Uttar Pradesh, the Mumbai bowlers rattled the opposition to bowl them out for 180. Pace bowlers Tushar Deshpande and Mohit Avasthi, and offspinner Tanush Kotian grabbed three wickets each. If not for the late resistance from Shivam Mavi, who fell two runs short of a fifty, they would have folded much earlier.
Mumbai were also helped by Uttar Pradesh, who dropped eight catches in the match.
Play started only after lunch on Day 5, as Sarfaraz Khan also continued his rich form this season with an unbeaten 59 in the second innings after 40 in the first, while Shams Mulani notched up twin half-centuries in the game.
Uttar Pradesh were bowled out on the third day, and with a hefty first-innings lead already in Mumbai's pocket, they continued piling on the runs rather than choose to enforce the follow-on. Champions for a record 41 times already, Mumbai now have a chance to add to that tally at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
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