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Abhinav keeps HP at bay

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SEDATE APPROACH: Tamil Nadu’s Abhinav Mukund scored a patient 96 on the third day of the match against Himachal Pradesh.
SEDATE APPROACH: Tamil Nadu’s Abhinav Mukund scored a patient 96 on the third day of the match against Himachal Pradesh.

Sports Reporter

Bold declaration by TN

Chennai: Abhinav Mukund held fort for a determined 96 in Tamil Nadu’s second innings against Himachal Pradesh on the third day of the Ranji Trophy Super-League match at the M.A. Chidambaram on Tuesday. The host declared at 296 for six, after S. Suresh Kumar’s entertaining unbeaten 66 stretched the lead past 300. Himachal was five for no loss at stumps, when play was called off due to bad light. Himachal needs another 303 runs to win the match.

Abhinav doggedly batted out session after session, striking just six boundaries in his 258-ball essay. He saw off a potential threat from Sarandeep Singh who bowled a relentless line before lunch. The off-spinner trapped captain S. Badrinath lbw with one that kept low, and sent K. Shri Vasudeva Das back after Paras Dogra pulled off a stunning catch at short-leg.

Strong in defence

The left-hander then settled down to occupying the crease. He was strong through the on-side; but it was his defence that was commendable. He put on 96 runs for the sixth wicket with Suresh Kumar, with the latter lofting Sarandeep for the innings’ only six. Suresh hit nine boundaries, including three consecutive fours off Vikramjit Malik.

Abhinav perished while playing at a wide delivery from Ashok Thakur, but the lead was already approaching 300.

Earlier on Monday, M. Vijay completed 1,000 Ranji runs during Tamil Nadu’s second innings. The 23-year-old took just 21 innings (12 matches) to reach the landmark.

Tamil Nadu — 1st innings: 234

Himachal Pradesh — 1st innings: 223

Tamil Nadu — 2nd innings: Abhinav Mukund c Manvinder Bisla b Ashok Thakur 96, M. Vijay c Bisla b Sarandeep Singh 9, K.H. Gopinath c Bisla b Vikramjit Malik 2, S. Badrinath lbw b Sarandeep 36, K. Shri Vasudeva Das c P. Dogra b Sarandeep 12, R. Srinivasan c Dogra b Vishal Bhatia 34, S. Suresh Kumar (not out) 66, R. Ramkumar (not out) 9, Extras (b-18, lb-12, nb-2): 32; Total (for six wkts. decl. in 91 overs): 296.

Fall of wickets: 1-17, 2-32, 3-86, 4-112, 5-184, 6-280.

Himachal Pradesh bowling: Thakur 18-4-49-1, Vikramjit Malik 11-2-45-1, V. Bhatia 23-4-54-1, Sarandeep 27-3-78-3, Sandeep Sharma 4-1-14-0, Jitender Mehta 8-1-26-0.

Himachal Pradesh — 2nd innings: Munish Gupta (not out) 4, Sharma (not out) 0, Extras (lb-1): 1; Total (no wicket, 1.3 overs): 5

Tamil Nadu bowling: V. Yomahesh 1-1-0-0, P. Amarnath 0.3-0-4-0.

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