Ranji Trophy 2023-24 semifinals: Mumbai thrashes Tamil Nadu to enter 48th final

Tamil Nadu was routed for 162 in a little over two sessions for the second time in three days.

Published : Mar 04, 2024 19:29 IST , Mumbai - 2 MINS READ

Mumbai players celebrate a dismissal.
Mumbai players celebrate a dismissal. | Photo Credit: EMMANUAL YOGINI/The Hindu

Mumbai players celebrate a dismissal. | Photo Credit: EMMANUAL YOGINI/The Hindu

The writing was on the wall after Mumbai’s lower-order onslaught on Day 2. It turned out to be a manic Monday for Tamil Nadu as Mumbai completed a thumping win, by an innings and 70 runs, against a familiar foe to book a berth in the Ranji Trophy final for the 48th time.

Forty-nine minutes after Tea on Day 3 at the Sharad Pawar Cricket Academy ground, Shreyas Iyer, who had dropped a dolly off the first ball of Tamil Nadu’s second innings, caught a miscued heave off Sandeep Warrier’s blade to give Shams Mulani his fourth wicket of the innings.

Tamil Nadu had been routed for 162 in a little over two sessions for the second time in three days. Warm hugs all around in the Mumbai camp followed. TN had to stay satisfied with the fact that it had reached its first Ranji Trophy semifinal since 2016–17.

At the start of the day, with an advantage of 207 runs and Tanush Kotian and Tushar Deshpande having added more than 60 runs for the last wicket, Tamil Nadu hoped to wind up a never-ending innings.

READ: Mumbai set to host Ranji Trophy 2023-24 final after thrashing Tamil Nadu in semifinal

While Deshpande flicked Warrier for a four early on, Tanush’s wristwork against Kuldeep Sen was a treat. Just when Kotian was nearing the rare milestone of a No. 10 scoring two hundreds in succession, Sai Sudharsan lunged forward to pouch an excellent catch off Washington Sundar to dismiss the left-handed Deshpande.

With Kotian stranded on 89* (126b, 12x4), Mumbai ended its first essay on 378. Thanks to the last three wickets adding 272 runs, Mumbai’s lead had swollen to 232 runs.

Shardul Thakur and Mohit Avasthi then got into action right away as the Tamil Nadu top-order collapsed yet again. Sudharsan (caught behind) and N. Jagadeesan (played across to be lbw) were dismissed by Thakur, while Washington, promoted to No. 3, poked at one from Avasthi to get wicketkeeper Hardik Tamore into action again.

ALSO READ: Shardul Thakur after scoring maiden First-Class ton in Ranji Trophy 2023-24 semifinal: Probably more hundreds will come

Tamore kept on accepting edges even in the afternoon, ending Baba Indrajith’s (70, 105b, 9x4) impressive knock. When Vijay Shankar was stumped off Mulani, it gave Tamore his fifth victim with the gloves and ended TN’s hopes of making Mumbai bat again.

The last five wickets fell for only nine runs, giving the Mumbai spin duo of Mulani and Kotian a boost ahead of the final.

Tamil Nadu 146 & 162 (Baba Indrajith 70; Shams Mulani 4/53) lost to Mumbai 378 (Musheer Khan 55, Shardul Thakur 109, Tanush Kotian 89 n.o.; R. Sai Kishore 6/99) by an innings and 70 runs.
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