Hyderabad opener P. Akshath Reddy cracked an impressive, unbeaten 105 (177 b, 17 x 4) to help his team score 188 for four when heavy rain, 20 minutes before scheduled tea break, forced abandonment of play in the four-day Ranji Trophy Group C match at the old VCA Stadium on Friday.
Resuming at 28 for one in reply to Goa’s first innings score of 164, Hyderabad lost overnight batsman Vishal Sharma in the fourth over. Soon, southpaw Balachander Anirudh (5) chased an away going delivery to play an off-drive only to edge it to slip cordon off pace bowler Ritu Raj Singh and see his team in a spot of bother at 49 for three.
Akshath was joined by his captain Subramaniam Badrinath and the two strung together a disciplined 100-run stand for the fourth wicket to put the innings back on track.
Akshath was clearly the more dominant partner, picking medium-pacer Saurabh Bandekar for special treatment and essaying some nonchalant strokes on either side of the wicket. The flowing off-drive and the pull in the same over from Bandekar were symbolic of the classy batting today.
In the mood to make optimum use of the opportunity to serve another reminder of his efficacy as an opener, Akshath, who was dropped on 69 by a diving wicketkeeper Keenan Vaz, silenced the critics back home with his 12th century in his 47th Ranji match.
On the other hand, Badrinath, playing his first match for Hyderabad, showed what experience was all about and was a sobering influence on the younger partner during the century stand. When he was looking good for a big score, Badrinath (41, 95b, 5 x 4) stepped out for an ambitious stroke only to be stumped smartly by wicketkeeper Keenan Vaz off left-arm spinner Darshan Misal.
Hyderabad is ahead by 24 runs with six wickets in hand.
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