Duleep Trophy: Sai Kishore’s 7-wicket haul gives South big lead vs North; West sets Central huge target
On the third day of the Duleep Trophy semifinal here on Saturday, left-arm spinner R Sai Kishore stole the show with a seven-wicket haul as South Zone claimed the crucial lead against North Zone.
Meanwhile, in Coimbatore, West Zone set Central Zone a lofty goal of 501 thanks to Prithvi Shaw‘s scorching 142 (140 balls, 15 fours, 4 sixes).
The excellent Yash Dhull (39, 70 balls, 4 fours, 1 six), a wicket taken by Tamil Nadu spinner Sai Kishore, who has been impressive in the white ball formats, contributed to the dismissal of North Zone for 207 in 67 overs.
Dhull and Manan Vohra (27) helped North Zone’s first innings score reach 67 after resuming at 24 for no loss before off-spinner K Gowtham (2 for 68) struck first, dismissing the latter, caught by Rohan Kunnummal.
Dhull, who had blasted a tonne against East Zone in the quarterfinal, was unable to maintain his strong form and entered the pavilion four runs after Vohra. He gave Sai Kishore his first victim by nicking one to the goalkeeper Ricky Bhui.
As a result of the captain Mandeep Singh’s (14) and Dhruv Shorey’s (28) simultaneous dismissals, North fell to 116 for 4.
For the fifth wicket, Himanshu Rana (17) and Nishant Sindhu (40, 64 balls, 4 fours, 2 sixes) combined for 48 runs.
However, North lost another wicket immediately after Rana was eliminated after Sai Kishore trapped him leg-before.
Sindhu persisted in fighting, but he did not receive much assistance from the opposing side. And also Sai Kishore quickly eliminated the lower order.
South had a sizable first-inning advantage after North were dismissed for 207. The lanky spinner ended with a 7 for 70 total. And crucial in helping the team win the first innings.
South decided to bat again rather than enforcing the follow-on. As the batters took advantage of their opportunity in the middle. Rohan Kunnummal, who had scored a ton in the first essay, came with a quickfire 77 (72 balls).
South were 157 for 1 at stumps.
South Zone 630 for 8 declared in 172.overs (Rohan Kunnummal 143, Hanuma Vihari 134, Ricky Bhui 103 not out) and 157 for 1 in 28 overs (Rohan Kunnummal 77, Mayank Agarwal 53 batting) vs North Zone 207 all out in 67 overs (Nishant Sindhu 40, Yash Dhull 39, Dhruv Shorey 28, R Sai Kishore 7 for 70). (Toss: South).
Central 33 for 2 in pursuit of 501 for win
West Zone set a lofty target of 501 to win the other semifinal. But Central was reduced to 33 for 2 by them.
Prithvi Shaw persisted in harassing the Central bowlers after attacking them on Friday and hitting a blazing tonne. He also increased the advantage by going from 140 balls to 142 (15 fours, 4 sixes).
Shaw struck down by Karan Sharma with the West’s total at 200, but the Central bowling unit’s struggles continued. The opposition onslaught thwarted by Armaan Jaffer (49) and wicketkeeper-batter Het Patel (67). Thereby putting Central out of the game.
West bowled out for 371 runs, with Patel being the final wicket to go for 67 runs.
The finest bowler for Central was left-arm spinner Kumar Kartikeya Singh. He added three wickets to his first innings total of 5 for 66.
Chintan Gaja dealt the first blow when Central started pursuing 501 by removing Yash Dubey (14).
Later, with the game yet to be played on the last day. Spinner Shams Mulani managed to get Himanshu Mantri (18) to leave the side in danger at 33 for 2.
West Zone 259 all out in 85.4 overs (Rahul Tripathi 67, Prithvi Shaw 60, Shams Mulani 41, Kumar Kartikeya Singh 5 for 66) and 371 all out in 104.4 overs (Prithvi Shaw 142, Het Patel 67, Armaan Jaffer 49, Kartikeya Singh 3 for 105) vs Central Zone 128 all out in 40.1 overs (Karan Sharma 34, Tanush Kotian 3 for 17, Jaydev Unadkat 3 for 24) and 33 for 2 in 9.2 overs. (Toss: Central).