Millennium Post

Mumbai sniff outright win, almost in quarters of Ranji

Mumbai are all but sure to make the quarterfinals of the Ranji Trophy as they took a huge 203-run lead against Gujarat and then reduced the visitors to 159 for five in their second innings on the third day of their Group A match on Monday.

Mumbai can even force an outright win if they take the remaining five Gujarat wickets early and then overhaul the target quickly.Gujarat are still trailing by 44 runs with Manprit Juneja (39) at the crease.

Gujarat skipper Parthiv Patel and Manprit steadied the ship after the visitors lost three early wickets.

They added 78 runs for the fourth wicket at the D Y Patil Stadium.

Centurion in the first innings’ Patel scored a run-a-ball 47, packed with four fours and a six, before being caught in the first slip by his counterpart Wasim Jaffer. Gujarat soon lost Rujul Bhatt (8), who came into bat for Patel in the last over, with Juneja still batting at 39. Pacer Javed Khan, who shared the new ball with Dhawal Kulkarni, and Ankeet Chavan scalped two wickets each while Suryakumar Yadav picked up a wicket. Earlier in the day, Mumbai added 124 runs to their overnight score of 323 and were bundled out at lunch for 447.

Suryakumar Yadav (42) and Abhishek Nayar shared a 45-run partnership before Yadav was trapped leg before by Kushang Patel. Nayar, unconquered at 72, batted well in the company of Zaheer Khan and struck nine fours. The duo shared a 48-run stand for the last wicket. Mumbai suffered a set back when skipper Zaheer Khan got hit on his leg by bowler Ishwar Choudhury and took treatment to resume his batting. He got out at 11, hitting two fours but was not on field when Gujarat came out to bat for the second time around. Khan had picked up two wickets in he first innings. Rush Kalaria and Kushang Patel grabbed three wickets each to help their side go through the Mumbai batting order.

Brief score: Gujarat: 244 and 159/5 (Parthiv Patel 47, Manpreet Juneja 39 batting; Javed Khan 2/22, A Chavan 2/59).
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