Ranji Trophy: Tripura falls short of outright win despite Patel ton

Tripura’s Smit Patel scored a quickfire century on the final day; Andhra gains three points from the draw.

Smith Patel's fantastic hundred couldn't secure an outright win for Tripura in its Ranji Trophy clash against Andhra Pradesh.   -  Sajal Chakraborty

Smit Kamleshbhai Patel raised his bat and arms to acknowledge cheers for his century, as the shadows lengthened across the Maharaja Bir Bikram University stadium on Sunday. The front of his shirt was soiled, testimony not just to his sweat and toil but the cheeky singles he ran en route to an unconquered 107 (99b, 11 x 4, 1 x 6).

Fading light, however, snuffed out Tripura’s hopes of victory against Andhra in their Ranji Trophy group C match. Chasing 322, the game ground to a halt when the host had 272 for five, 50 short of target with 10 overs remaining.

Scorecard

Andhra cruised to 100, a little over half an hour into Day Four. K. S. Bharat posted his 50, too. The opener, then, attempted an ill-conceived scoop/glide to leg side off Rana Datta’s straight delivery, missed the line completely and heard the fatal thud behind him.

Read: Vidarbha inflicts 10-wicket defeat on Bengal

The track posed no threat; neither did the Tripura attack. Ashwin Hebbar with a 32-ball 44, studded with three sixes, left behind B. Sumanth’s 39 in the push to effect a declaration. The visitor called a halt half an hour before early lunch, at 234 for four.

Andhra opened its attack with left-arm spinner Bhargav Bhatt, hoping perhaps for the strip to take some spin. Leggie D. B. Ravi Teja came on early but it was Prasanth, also plying his gentle wrist spin, who had Bishal Ghosh lobbing a catch straight to Ravi Teja at mid-on.

Quick runs

Udiyan Bose then entertained the sparse crowd with a trio of sixes and seven boundaries in a quick-fire 53. The one-down batsman’s blistering assault ended when he was castled by Bhatt.

The fourth wicket pair of Smit Patel and Yashpal Singh added 87, the former notching up a half-century in 55 balls. Yashpal, who had cracked 96 against Tamil Nadu last month, slashed at Vijay Kumar’s outgoing delivery and fell to a well-judged catch by Hanuma Vihari at extra cover.

The close-in fielders employed by the spinners spread out when the pacemen resumed operation. Gurinder Singh’s loft was picked up by substitute K.V. Sasikanth at cow corner off Ayyappa.

Brief Scores
  • Andhra 402 and 234 for 4 dec drew with Tripura 315 and 272 for 5 (U. Ghosh 53, Patel 107*; Bhatt 2 for 83).

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