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.
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.