Off-spinner K. Gowtham achieved his maiden five-wicket haul as Karnataka outclassed Delhi by an innings and 160 runs to secure seven points in the Ranji Trophy Group B match at the Eden Gardens here on Saturday.
Trailing by 324 runs in the first innings, Delhi displayed another miserable batting performance to be all out for 164 in the second innings and suffer its first defeat of the season.
If the Delhi first innings lasted for a session, its second essay folded in one-and-a-half sessions. The Gautam Gambhir-led side, which needed to bat for two days to save the match, was back in the pavilion by 50 minutes into the middle period on day three.
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The lack of application of Delhi batters was bewildering as five of the top seven got out playing poor shots on a pitch offering uneven bounce.
The procession began with Gambhir, who pushed an away going delivery from Abhimanyu Mithun to be caught by a diving Robin Uthappa in the second slip in the fourth over.
The next ball kept low and uprooted Dhruv Shorey’s off-stump to signal an early finish to the match.
Mithun could not achieve his hat-trick but bowled with a lot of intensity and pace to get some purchase from the track in his successful opening spell, conceding nine runs in four overs.
Unmukt Chand (38) and Nitish Rana (28) showed some heart to add 50 runs for the third wicket before Gowtham’s introduction took the match to its concluding phase in a fast-forward manner.
Gowtham consistently hit an ideal length and got some turn. He took Rana’s wicket with a straighter one in his third over and followed it up with four more in next three. Rishabh Pant played a drive and edged it to the first slip, Milind Kumar stepped out to be caught at short mid-wicket, Manan offered a sitter to short cover and Unmukt fell to a rash shot.
“After doing well against a star-studded Delhi, Gowtham will grow in confidence,” said Karnataka coach J. Arun Kumar.
Delhi, which took lunch at 114 for seven, waited for the inevitable.
Leg-spinner Shreyas Gopal accounted for Vikas Tokas and Ishant Sharma and S. Aravind completed the formalities by castling Pawan Suyal as Varun Sood, the top-scorer with 41 not out, remained a witness to his team’s dismal showing.