Duleep Trophy, IND Red v IND Blue Day 4 Review: Tons from Hooda and Vihari hands Blues final berth

Reds are sitting at the top of the table with 6 points and go through to the final.

Deepak Hooda
Deepak Hooda. (Photo Source: Twitter)

In a 4-day Test match, if one day is completely wasted owing to rain, one doesn’t expect the match to provide a result unless it is a very low scoring one. The second match of the 56th edition of Duleep Trophy, contested between India Red and India Blue was not a low scoring one and hence, the match ended in the obvious fate, which is a draw. Reds were offered 2 points for taking a first innings lead.

After wasting almost the entire penultimate day, the rain gods took some rest today as Hanuma Vihari and Deepak Hooda entered the crease to make sure they cross the 383-run mark to get 2 points. Vihari completed his century first up, but couldn’t last long enough as Basil Thampi knocked off the stumps. Highly rated youngster Ishan Kishan also couldn’t last long and departed without increasing his individual career run tally.


Jaydev and Deepak takes Blues past 383-run mark

At 300/5, Karthik was gearing up for a first-innings lead when the mind games were played by Suresh Raina, by promoting Jaydev Unadkat ahead of Bhargav Bhatt. Seems like Raina has learnt quite a few things about captaincy with his stint with Gujarat Lions, as the plan with Unadkat worked like magic. Jaydev and Deepak took the likes of Thampi, Kaul and Milind for a joy-ride and the 6th wicket came in the form of Unadkat only after securing two points.

Hooda then edged Gohil’s delivery and Karthik made no mistake behind the stumps. Bhatt tried to contribute but unfortunately for him, no one was ready to stand long enough to cross the 450-run mark, as Karn Sharma completed yet another 5-wicket haul with a late flourish of wickets. The innings finally ended at 444 and there was simply no time for any other outcome other than a draw.

Reds crumble in the second innings

But Duleep Trophy has always been the platform for the players to showcase their talent and let the selectors understand that they are no less than the bunch currently wearing the Indian jersey. One such player who is in sublime form at the moment is Priyank Panchal. But he could only manage 19 runs in the 2nd innings as Akshay Wakhare picked up his 2nd wicket of the match.

Panchal’s partner, Sudip Chatterjee fared even worse and followed a similar route like Ishan Kishan, by departing without opening his account. The 2nd innings saw some late drama as the bowlers showed their prowess. Rahul Singh and Chama Milind scored 19 each, while Rishabh Pant finally managed to perform up to the expectations with 46 runs in just 23 balls. Except for Wakhare, Unadkat, Rajpoot and Tiwary were the wicket-takers as Reds lost 5 wickets in no time.

First innings’ star Baba Indrajith looked solid in the second as well, with 24 runs in 61 deliveries. Many would agree that he could have made another big score, but the umpires announced the end of day’s play and thereby, the end of the match. With this, the Reds are now standing tall with 6 points, while Blues will face the likes of Parthiv Patel and Murali Vijay to ensure their ticket to the final, which will be played at the Ekana International Cricket Stadium, Lucknow, from 25th September.

Brief scores

1st Innings

India Red- 383/10 (Baba Indrajith 200, Priyank Panchal 36; Ankit Rajpoot 3/56)

India Blue- 444/10 (Deepak Hooda 133, Hanuma Vihari 105; Karn Sharma 5/94)

2nd innings

India Red- 133/5 (Rishabh Pant 46, Baba Indrajith 24*; Ankit Rajpoot 1/17)