Ranji Trophy Final: Madhya Pradesh bat their way to ascendancy on day three | Cricket News

Ranji Trophy Final: Madhya Pradesh bat their way to ascendancy on day three | Cricket News


BENGALURU: The third day of a five-day Ranji Trophy contest is usually when the big moves are made. At the Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Friday, Madhya Pradesh took the decisive step by proving immovable.
The pitch on the third day of the final played flat and true and MP’s batsmen needed patience and determination to make an impact. They had both in tons.
Opener Yash Dubey chose temperament over temptation and in the process set the tone with a gritty century (133; 336b, 14×4) that spanned a remarkable 546 minutes of monk-like concentration. The other two batsmen who starred on the day – Shubham Sharma (116; 215b, 15×4, 1×6) and Rajat Patidar (batting 67; 106b, 13×4) – simply followed suit.
The three batsmen have been the cornerstone of MP’s batting unit this season and delivered yet again. At stumps, MP were at 368/3, just six runs away from Mumbai’s first-inning total of 374.
Mumbai bowlers haven’t been tested much this season and it showed as they toiled and sweated and had little to show for their effort. They did have their opportunities but fluffed them with uncharacteristic tardiness.

MP started the day at 123/1, trailing their opposition by 251 runs. While Dubey was comfortable playing his strokes against pacers and biding his time against spinners, Sharma’s innings was more stroke-filled and pacy.
He made the most of the lifeline offered to him on 55 when his uppish drive off Tushar Deshpande was put down by Armaan Jaffer at short point. In the 67th over he survived two lbw appeals as the Mumbai demonstrated their desperation for a breakthrough.
Dubey, the fulcrum around which the MP innings was built, brought up his second century of the season by sweeping spinner Tanush Kotian to the boundary and followed it up with the ‘shut out the noise’ celebration popularised by KL Rahul.
Soon after, Sharma, with a straight drive to covers off Deshpande, raised his bat in celebration of his fourth century of the season. The duo’s 222-run second-wicket association, which came off 440 balls, was halted by Avasthi with Sharma nicking to wicketkeeper Hardik Tamore.

LUCKY BREAK FOR RAJAT PATIDAR
Sharma’s departure brought ‘home boy’ Rajat Patidar to the crease amidst the chants of “RCB! RCB!” from the spectators. The Royal Challengers Bangalore’s late find of this season did not disappoint the compact gathering as he flayed the Mumbai attack.
Off the fourth delivery he faced on the day, he flicked Deshpande through deep mid-wicket for a boundary and continued to go after the medium pacer. The colour of the ball or the format had no bearing on Patidar as he clipped Avasthi for a boundary to bring up his 44-ball 50.
Much like Dubey, Patidar too displayed even temperament and put a price on his wicket. There was a lucky break for Patiday when on 52, he was dismissed off a noball by spinner Shams Mulani with Kotian collecting the catch at backward point.
Patidar went on the defence thereafter and did not score off the next 27 deliveries he faced. In the intervening period, Mulani ended Dubey’s vigil with the batsman edging a turning ball to Tamore.
Patidar and skipper Aditya Shrivastava (11) saw off the day with caution being the watchword.
Scores (1st Innings): MP 368/3 (Dubey 133, Shubham 116, Patidar 67*) trail Mumbai 374 (Sarfaraz 134, Jaiswal 78, Yadav 4/106) by 6 runs





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Author: Shirley