Ranji Trophy 2017-18, Quarterfinals: Day 3 Review
Shreyas Gopal floored Mumbai with an unbeaten 150 run knock.
Published - Dec 9, 2017 6:35 pm | Updated - Dec 9, 2017 6:35 pm
The third day proved to be the moving day in the ongoing knockout games of the Ranji Trophy, the first-class tournament in India. While Karnataka is only seven wickets away from registering an innings victory over Mumbai, Vidarbha trumped Kerala to take a crucial lead. In the other two quarterfinals, Delhi dominated the day but Madhya Pradesh still have a chance to make a comeback. The defending champions Gujarat, however, are in trouble against Bengal and they would need a miracle to win from a position they are in at the end of day 3.
Bengal rule over Gujarat
The title holders of the last season are in danger of being knocked out of the tournament in quarterfinals this year. They were bowled out for just 224 early on the third day thereby conceding a huge lead of 130 to Bengal. In the second innings, they would’ve hoped to pick few quick wickets and make a comeback in the match. But the openers of Bengal first denied them an early wicket and then the second wicket partnership also fared well to take the lead beyond 300.
Abhimanyu Easwaran is on the cusp of another century, his second of the match, and ended the day unbeaten 93* alongside Writtick Chatterjee who was on 40. Bengal had scored 177/1 by the end of the day and have now extended their lead to 307 which already might be enough. Gujarat needs a miracle now to win the match whereas Bengal would be eyeing a historic semi-final spot.
Delhi sneak ahead in the close game
Delhi and Madhya Pradesh are involved in an intense encounter with the former side are slightly ahead currently considering their first innings lead of 67 runs. The lower-middle order batsmen added some crucial runs for them which took their score beyond 400. In response, MP, unfortunately, lost two quick wickets and still trail by 20 runs in the second innings. They finished the day on 47/2 and would hope to string a few partnerships and post a stiff target in front of their opposition.
Vidarbha turn tables on Kerala
The most engaging day of cricket was played in the game between Vidarbha and Kerala as the latter team squandered a good position after bowling their opposition out for a below-par total. Kerala was bowled out for just 176 courtesy the five-wicket haul from Rajneesh Gurbani. The lead of 70 runs is key here given the low scores in the first innings from both the sides. Vidarbha started well in their second chance with their skipper Faiz Fazal notching up an unbeaten half-century with the score reading 77/1 and a total lead of 147 runs.
They would look to extend it on the fourth day and bat their opposition out of the game. Kerala, on the other hand, would be keen to pick quick wickets and restrict the lead to anything below 300 to chase a reasonable total.
Mumbai on the brink against Karnataka
The clash of titans has disappointed the most in the knockouts as Mumbai capitulated big time in the first innings. Karnataka then piled on the agony and posted a mammoth total of 570 on the back of a sensational 150* from Shreyas Gopal. The tail wagged to frustrate the already tired bowlers of Mumbai as the number 11 batsman Sreenath Aravind scoring a 41 ball half-century. Mumbai batsmen expectedly looked tired and under pressure when they came out to bat and lost a couple of wickets as their openers threw their wickets away. They ended the day on 120/3, still, 277 runs adrift of the first innings lead and are in danger of losing the game by an innings.
1st Quarterfinal: Gujarat v Bengal
Bengal 354 (A Easwaran 129, A Majumdar 94; I Chaudhary 5/87) & 177/1 (A Easwaran 93*)
Gujarat 224 (B Merai 67, P Patel 47; A Dinda 3/48, A Boddupalli 3/53)
2nd Quarterfinal: Delhi v Madhya Pradesh
Madhya Pradesh 338 (H Singh 107*, A Dane 59; M Sharma 4/46) & 47/2
Delhi 405 (D Shorey 78, K Chandela 81, H Singh 71; M Hirwani 5/89)
3rd Quarterfinal: Kerala v Vidarbha
Vidarbha 246 (A Wadkar 53; KC Akshay 5/66) & 77/1 (F Fazal 51*; J Saxena 1/17)
Kerala 176 (J Saxena 40; R Gurbani 5/38)
4th Quarterfinal: Kerala v Mumbai
Mumbai 173 (D Kulkarni 75; V Kumar 6/34, S Aravind 2/45) & 120/3 (S Yadav 55*; K Gowtham 2/30)
Karnataka 570 (S Gopal 150*, M Agarwal 78, CM Gautam 79, M Abbas 50; S Dubey 5/98)