Defending champs Gujarat through to Ranji quarters
Ranchi, Nov 28 (Cricketnmore) Defending champions Gujarat stormed into the quarter-finals of the Ranji Trophy after registering a handsome 10-wicket win over Jharkhand in a Group B game at the JSCA International Stadium Complex here on Tuesday.
Kerala was the other team from Group B to make the cut. From Group A, Karnataka and Delhi have already qualified.
In Group C, Madhya Pradesh and Mumbai made it to the knockouts while Bengal joined already qualified Vidarbha in the quarters from Group D.
Gujarat needed just 10 balls to wipe out a fourth-innings target of 15. Samit Gohel (4 not out) and Priyank Panchal (12 not out) completed the formalities. The convincing win ensured that the Parthiv Patel-led side finished top of the table.
Jharkhand had imploded on the fourth day morning after being asked to follow-on on the third day.
They did not begin well, losing two wickets in the first three overs. Virat Singh and Ishan Kishan tried to stem the rot with a 48-run association for the fifth wicket, but Jharkhand crumbled once Virat was dismissed for 52.
They lost six wickets for just 26 runs to be skittled out for 183. Left-arm spinner Hardik Patel returned best figures of 4/9 in six overs.
Meanwhile, Kerala finished second in the group after notching up an innings and eight-run victory against Haryana. This was the first time Kerala entered the quarter-finals since the introduction of the tier system in the Ranji Trophy format.
They needed five wickets on the fourth and final day, having reduced Haryana to 83 for 5.
India discard Amit Mishra and Poonish Mehta tried hard for Haryana with knocks of 40 and 32 not out respectively, but seamer MD Nidheesh scalped three wickets to earn Kerala a bonus point win.
Already qualified heavyweights Karnataka, meanwhile, romped to a mammoth 209-run win over Railways at the Karnail Singh Stadium in New Delhi.
Delhi rode on their first innings to grab three points versus Hyderabad at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium.
Madhya Pradesh beat Odisha by seven wickets while Mumbai won by 155 runs against Team Rajasthan.
In Kolkata, Bengal had Anustup Majumdar's twin tons in both innings (119 & 108 n.o.) to thank for their first innings lead and subsequent three points against Goa. Vidarbha also bagged three points courtesy their first innings lead against Himachal Pradesh.