Ranji Trophy: Hyderabad gets off to a flying start

With two washouts and a huge loss, the Ambati Rayudu-led Hyderabad was desperate to get some momentum in Group A and, against Railways, its batsmen started strongly and ended in firm control of the game at the Karnail Singh Stadium here on Wednesday.

Ambati Rayudu remained unbeaten on 88.   -  Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

Hyderbad knew it was in a precarious situation before it arrived here for its fourth Ranji Trophy game of the season. With two washouts and a huge loss, the Ambati Rayudu-led side was desperate to get some momentum in Group A and, against Railways, its batsmen started strongly and ended in firm control of the game at the Karnail Singh Stadium here on Wednesday.

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READ: Prithvi Shaw scores fourth century in five first-class matches

With Rayudu unbeaten on 88 and Bavanaka Sandeep on 64, the visitor ended the opening day on 272 for the loss of three wickets as the umpires called off play three overs early due to fading light. Two of them were accounted for by 27-year old pacer Manish Rao, making his first-class debut with the team after biding his time for long with Mumbai without success. And though the experienced Anureet Singh managed to be his frugal self at the other end, there was little to cause much trouble to the batsmen.

Match reports:

Railways vs Hyderabad: Hyderabad gets off to a flying start

Uttar Pardesh vs Delhi: Delhi fights but UP has its nose in front

Maharashtra vs Karnataka: Tripathi hits century but it's Vinay's day out

Saurashtra vs Jharkhand:

Madhya Pradesh vs Andhra: Andhra restricts MP to 219/5, Prithviraj shines

Mumbai vs Odisha: Odisha pulls Mumbai plug after Shaw ton

For Ranji round-up, click here

Everyone got runs but coach J. Arunkumar would have been happier with the control his players had on the game at all times. Specially captain Rayudu, who treated the Railways bowlers with disdain, pulling and stroking his way to 88 at will. His knock included three huge sixes – two of them over long off and long on off Shivakant Shukla and Ashish Yadav respectively early on – as the 32-year old signalled his intentions to up the scoring.

Even before his arrival, however, opener Tanmay Agarwal and Akshath Reddy had helped the team settle nicely. Their 98-run partnership was evenly shared, the strike equally rotated and the runs coming with ease. Agarwal finally fell one over before lunch but that did nothing to curb Reddy's aggressive shot-making and it led to his finally edging one to Shivakant Shukla in the slips for a well-made 69.

For the host, Rao and Karan Thakur picked up the wickets but every bowler went for runs as Hyderabad's run rate rarely dipped below three. Captain Mahesh Rawat persisted with his quartet of pace-medium pace throughout the day. Left-arm spinner Ashish Yadav and off-spinner Shukla shared just 20 overs between them, 17 of them by Yadav.