Hyderabad’s batting woes continued this season as Saurashtra skittled the home team for 79 on first day of the Ranji Trophy Elite Group B match at Gymkhana Ground in Hyderabad on Tuesday.
Electing to bat, Hyderabad saw the captain Tanmay Agarwal (2), playing his 50th Ranji match, being bowled by one that swung back sharply from left-arm pacer Jaydev Unadkat as he offered a loose defensive push in the third over of the day.
Soon, Unadkat forced Alankrit Agarwal (7) to edge one to Arpit Vasavada and in the 14th over, the Saurashtra captain struck again to remove an out-of-sorts debutant T. Santosh Goud (4), caught at second slip by a diving Vasavada to his left, to leave Hyderabad in trouble at 20 for three.
Hyderabad never really recovered from those early blows on a pitch which was never unplayable and all that was needed was a disciplined approach which the Hyderabad batters lacked badly once again.
Medium-pacer Chirag Jani induced a cover drive from Chandan Sahani straight to the fielder’s hands and Rohit Rayudu was disappointed to be declared out to a bat-pad catch off Yuvrajsingh Dodiya to make it 51 for 6 in 25th over.
When Saurashtra batted, the openers Harvik Desai (81, 108b, 12×4) and Chirag Jani (68, 91b, 11×4, 1×6) looked as if they were playing on a different pitch, combining compact defence with some brilliant strokes on either side of the wicket.
It took an expensive left-arm spinner Aniketh Reddy to strike the first blow when he had Chirag caught behind by Bhavesh Seth and later Harvik Desai too perished, declared lbw to the same bowler, a decision which saw Harvik in utter disbelief as he walked back to the pavilion.
Rohit Rayudu struck twice in the final session to dismiss Arpit Vasavada (9) and Samarth Vyas (0) to give some hope for his team. But, Sheldon Jackon was looking dangerous (59 batting, 61b, 5×4, 4×6) and already helped Saurashtra extend the lead to 171 runs with five wickets in hand.
Hyderabad – 1st innings
Tanmay Agarwal b Unadkat 2, K. Rohit Rayudu c Samarth b Yuvrajsinh 23, Alankrit Agarwal c Vasavada b Unadkat 7, T. Santosh Goud c Vasavada b Unadkat 4, Chandan Sahani c Sakariya b Chirag 2, Bhavesh Seth b Sakariya 3, T. Ravi Teja c Chirag b Dharmendrasinh Jadeja 8, Bhagath Varma c Pujara b Dharmendrasinh Jadeja 11, M. Shashank c Jackson b Yuvrajsinh 5, G. Aniketh Reddy not out 10, Mohammad Abrar c Desai b Dharmendrasinh Jadeja 0.
Extras: (b-4) 4
Total: (all out in 30.5 overs) 79.
Fall of wickets: 1-2, 2-16, 3-20, 4-23, 5-34, 6-51, 7-59, 8-68, 9-79, 10-79
Saurashtra bowling: Unadkat 8-0-29-3, Sakariya 9-5-8-1, Chirag 4-1-7-1, Yuvrajsinh 5-0-23-2, Mankad 1-0-1-0, Dharmendrasinh Jadeja 3.5-0-8-3.
Saurashtra – 1st innings
Harvik Desai lbw Aniketh 81, Chirag Jani c Bhavesh b Aniketh 68, Cheteshwar Pujara c Sahani b Aniketh 25, Sheldon Jackson batting 59, Arpit Vasavada c Bhavesh b Rohit Rayudu 9, Samarth Vyas c Alankrit b Rohit Rayudu 0, Dharmendrasinh Jadeja batting 3
Extras: (nb-5) 5
Total: (for five wkts in 54 overs) 250
Fall of wickets: 1-140, 2-167, 3-193, 4-218, 5-222
Hyderabad bowling: Ravi Teja 5-1-28-0, Abrar 5-0-23-0, Aniketh 19-4-74-3, Shashank 10-3-48-0, Bhagath 11-0-57-0, Rohit Rayudu 4-0-20-2.