Big wins for Delhi, Punjab

A round-up of the Ranji Trophy Group B matches on December 10, 2014

Punjab 273 (Yuvraj 59, Jayant 6-85) and 330 for 6 dec (Yuvraj 130, Amitoze 65) beat Haryana 283 (Jayant 51*, Rajwinder 3-62) and 200 (Rana 86, Sandeep 3-30) by 120 runs
Three-wicket hauls from Sandeep Sharma, Rajwinder Singh and Sarabjit Ladda helped Punjab bowl Haryana out for 200, setting up the team's 120-run win in Patiala. Chasing a formidable 321 for victory, Haryana, who began the day precariously placed at 26 for 3, were dealt an early blow as their opener Avi Barot was dismissed three overs in. Sachin Rana kept the score ticking with an 134-ball 86, but Haryana's next highest contribution was Joginder Sharma's 36 all the way down at No.10, as Punjab kept picking up wickets at regular intervals. Sandeep was the pick of the bowlers, collecting 3 for 30, while Rajwinder and Ladda took 3 for 54 and 3 for 76, as Haryana were bundled out inside 61 overs. Yuvraj Singh was named the Man of the Match for his second-innings century.
Delhi 442 (Gambhir 147, Narwal 65, Awana 61) and 19 for 1 beat Saurashtra 217 (Chauhan 63, Bhatia 3-25) and 240 (Jackson 51, Saini 3-27) by nine wickets
Delhi needed just 36 overs on day four to complete a nine-wicket win against Saurashtra at the Roshanara Club Ground. Following on in their second innings, Saurashtra began the day at 163 for 4, still 62 runs adrift. It did not get any better for them, as Divyaraj Chauhan was dismissed two overs into the day, and their top scorer Sheldon Jackson (51) followed suit six overs later. Delhi then did not take too long to clean up the tail, as Navdeep Saini (3 for 27) and Sumit Narwal (3 for 41) both collected three-fors to bowl the team out for 240, meaning that the hosts needed just 16 for victory. Delhi lost Unmukt Chand in the second over of the chase, but Gautam Gambhir, who had put his team in a dominant position with a first-innings ton, and Varun Sood helped the team breeze home in 5.3 overs.
Gujarat 340 (Merai 74, Panchal 68, Gohel 52) and 266 for 7 dec (Panchal 110, Gehlot 4-50) drew with Rajasthan 195 (Chaudhary 4-62) and 271 for 8 (Bist 124*, Chaudhary 4-71)
An unbeaten hundred from Robin Bist helped Rajasthan defy Gujarat's push towards victory in Jaipur. When Ishwar Chaudhary had Deepak Chahar caught behind in the 101st over of Rajasthan's innings, Gujarat were left with two wickets to get in 2.1 overs. Bist and Pankaj Singh managed to survive those 13 balls, and Gujarat had to be satisfied with three points. Chaudhary finished with four wickets in the innings and eight in the match.
Set 412 to win, Rajasthan began the final day on a sticky 34 for 3. Their situation improved thanks to an 83-run fourth-wicket stand between Bist and Ashok Menaria, who made a brisk 64-ball 41 before falling to the medium-pace of Kushang Patel. Gujarat then endured a long wait for their next wicket, as Bist and Rajesh Bishnoi batted a ball short of 50 overs to put on 115.
When Bishnoi fell for a 139-ball 35, Rajasthan had only 17.3 overs to bat out with five wickets in hand. They wobbled, losing Arjit Gupta, Dishant Yagnik and Chahar in quick succession, but Bist held firm to see them through to safety. Bist finished not out on 124, having spent over six hours at the crease and faced 293 balls.
Odisha 311 (Samantray 106, Natraj Behera 66, Mundhe 4-103) and 178 for 5 (Natraj Behera 74, Darekar 3-32) drew with Maharashtra 371 (Khadiwale 83, Mundhe 82*, Khurana 54, Deepak Behera 4-82)
Natraj Behera scored a patient 74 as Odisha claimed a point against Maharashtra in Pune. Having taken a 60-run first-innings lead on the third day, Maharashtra needed to bowl Odisha out cheaply if they were to force a win, but they only managed to take five wickets before the teams agreed to a draw at the start of the final hour.
Resuming at 1 for 0, Odisha lost Girjia Rout in the fourth over of the morning. His partner Natraj, though, stayed at the crease till the 65th over of the day, by which time his team was well on its way to safety. Natraj received useful support from each of the middle-order batsmen, and put on 42 with Niranjan Behera for the second wicket, 47 with Anurag Sarangi for the third, and 53 with Biplab Samantray for the fourth. Left-arm spinner Akshay Darekar was Maharashtra's most successful bowler, picking up three wickets in 22 overs.