Ranji Trophy: Tamil Nadu avoids wooden spoon

Tamil Nadu finished 14th in the combined points table for Elite Group A & B with 15 points, Delhi finished 16th with 14 points, ahead of Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh.

Tamil Nadu's Pradosh Ranjan Paul in action against Delhi in their Ranji Trophy league match.   -  K. Pichumani

In a battle to decide who manages to avoid the wooden spoon in Group B, Tamil Nadu managed to salvage some pride after taking the first innings lead against Delhi in a Ranji Trophy game at the M.A Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on Thursday.

While Tamil Nadu finished 14th in the combined points table for Elite Group A & B with 15 points, Delhi finished 16th with 14 points, ahead of Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh.

Resuming at 268 for six, overnight batsmen Jonty Sidhu and Lalit Yadav, who was batting on 65, played with freedom. The right-handed Lalit was the initial aggressor pocketing four quick boundaries to race into his 90s before hitting driving one straight to cover fielder off left-arm spinner Sai Kishore, falling nine short of what would have been a deserving hundred.

As the Day 4 panned out

Jonty Sidhu, who did the main rescue act on Wednesday, looked as assured hitting a few boundaries and a beautiful six driving through the line of Vijay Shankar over the long on fence.

However, Sidhu ran out of partners and was stranded on 140 as Delhi was bowled out for 336, 96 behind TN’s first innings total.

Sai Kishore who admitted that he could have bowled a bit slower on the third day, did just that on day four pricing out Subodh Bhati and Navdeep Saini to complete his second five-wicket haul in First Class cricket.

In the academic second innings, TN openers N. Jagadeesan and Baba Aparajith had a nice hit in the middle adding 89 for the opening wicket partnership before Aparajith was dismissed. 

Jagadeesan made an unbeaten half-century while Delhi’s catching was once again found wanting with both batsmen getting a reprieve once. 

Aparajith opened in the absence of Abhinav Mukund, who did not take the field in the morning as he was not feeling well and the match was called off half-hour into the final session with TN on 113 for one.

Scoreboard

Tamil Nadu (1st innings): 432

Delhi (1st innings): Kunal Chandela run out (Vijay Shankar) 27, Shivam Sharma lbw Sai Kishore 7, Dhruv Shorey c&b Mohan Prasath 8, Nitish Rana c Indrajith b Mohammed 6, Himmat Singh lbw Sai Kishore 39, Jonty Sidhu (not out) 140, Anuj Rawat lbw Aparajith 6, Lalit Yadav c sub (Kousik) b Sai Kishore 91, Subodh Bhati c Indrajith b Sai Kishore 0, Vikas Mishra run out (Mohammed/Sai Kishore) 0, Navdeep Saini c Aparajith b Sai Kishore 1.

Extras (nb-6, b-4, lb-1): 11 

Total (all out in 133.1 overs) 336.

Fall of wickets: 1-35, 2-35, 3-47, 4-49, 5-127, 6-142, 7-312, 8-312, 9-334

Bowling: T. Natarajan 21-5-70-0, M. Mohammed 13-3-28-1, Sai Kishore 43.1-13-90-5, Mohan Prasath 24-5-55-1, Vijay Shankar 6-1-17-0, Aparajith 24-4-64-1, Pradosh Ranjan 2-0-7-0.

Tamil Nadu (2nd innings): B. Aparajith c Rana b Lalit 33, N. Jagadeesan (not out) 59, Pradosh Ranjan Paul (not out 17).

Extras (b-4) 4.

Total (for one wicket in declared in 40 overs) 113

Fall of wickets: 1-89.

Bowling: Rana 7-0-31-0, Bhati 9-2-22-0, Shivam 10-1-31-0, Vikas 9-2-11-0, Lalit Yadav 4-1-9-0, Sidhu 1-0-5-0.

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