Ranji Trophy 2018-19, Final, Day 2, Review: Defending champions Vidarbha fight back brilliantly to gain the upper hand

Ranji Trophy 2018-19, Final, Day 2, Review: Defending champions Vidarbha fight back brilliantly to gain the upper hand

Jaydev Unadkat picked up his 250th wicket in first-class cricket on day-2.

Saurashtra
Saurashtra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

From 200/7 at the close of play on Day-1, defending champions Vidarbha have fought back brilliantly in the Ranji Trophy final. While it looked like they’d be bowled out under 250, the lower-order put on quite a show. The last four batsmen in the line-up added 126 runs together to shift the balance towards their side.

Akshay Karnewar, who was continued batting with an overnight score of 31 held one end up tight. He fought hard for the runs and hardly gave any chances to the bowlers. Karnewar remained unbeaten on 73 and found good support from Akshay Wakhare at the other end. The off-spinner scored 34 runs as this duo added 78 runs together. However, a slight lapse of concentration saw his middle-stump go cartwheeling.

Umesh Yadav scored a quickfire 13 before Jaydev Unadkat registered his 250th first-class wicket by dismissing him. By getting Rajneesh Gurbani clean bowled for 6 runs, Kamlesh Makvana put curtains to Vidarbha’s first innings. The side finished with 312 runs on the board while Unadkat picked three wickets in the innings.

Can Saurashtra’s lower-order put up the same kind of fight back?

In their first innings, Saurashtra batsmen struggled quite a bit. Akshay Sarwate was the pick of the bowlers with three wickets thus far. First, he dismissed the in-form Harvik Desai for just 10 runs. He then also accounted for the wicket of Vishvaraj Jadeja as he trapped the batsman in front of the stumps.

However, the most prized moment of all came when he picked up India’s number three. Just as Cheteshwar Pujara was looking to get his eye in, a slower ball from the left-arm orthodox got the big fish. Sarwate bowled that one at 76.5 clicks that pitched in the middle and spun away. There wasn’t any movement of the feet from Pujara and thus the ball ended up finding the outside edge. Wasim Jaffer, at first slip, plucked a good, sharp catch.

The Wakhare took over and dismissed both Aarpit Vasavada and Sheldon Jackson cheaply. Saurashtra finished the day with a score of 158/5 and still trail by 154 runs. Snell Patel, though, held the fort at one end and is unbeaten on 87. He had one or two close calls that could have gone either way. His contribution on day-3 will be critical if Saurashtra is to do well.

Brief Scores:

Vidarbha, 1st innings: 312/10 in 120.2 overs (Akshay Karnewar 73*, Akshay Wadkar 45; Jaydev Unadkat 3/54)

Saurashtra, 1st innings: 158/5 in 59 overs (Snell Patel 87*, Vishvaraj Jadeja 18; Aditya Sarwate 3/55)

Match Situation: Saurashtra trail by 154 runs.

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