Tamil Nadu nearly pulled off an astonishing win over Haryana in the Ranji Trophy Elite Group ‘B' match here at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium on Sunday.
It was V. Yomahesh who breathed life into a contest that seemed certain to end in a dull draw on the fourth day. In a superb spell of sharp reverse-swing and deceptive leg-cutters, the 23-year-old seamer destroyed Haryana. From 161 for three, the touring side crashed to 200 all out. Yomahesh finished with figures of six for 47 from 16 overs. Five of his victims were bowled, beaten by late movement.
This left Tamil Nadu a target of 146 runs to get in 13 overs.
Dinesh Karthik (55, 32b, 2x4, 3x6) and M. Vijay (42, 19b, 5x6) frightened Haryana with an exceptional exhibition of ball-striking. Tamil Nadu fell five runs short, but its attacking intent must be applauded.
The pursuit, which was progressing at a rate of nine an over, gained incredible momentum in the ninth over, which was bowled by captain Amit Mishra. Karthik (one six) and Vijay (three sixes) took 27 runs off the over, spreading panic in the opposition camp.
Although wickets fell in the urgency to get runs, Vijay ensured Tamil Nadu stayed in touch. As many as 17 runs were made in the penultimate over. But with victory in sight — nine were needed off six balls — the chase unravelled. Vijay and Yomahesh took three singles between them before the latter was trapped ‘lbw' by Sachin Rana. Desperate to get on strike for the last ball, Vijay was run out by the ‘keeper at the striker's end.
Vijay smashed the stumps in disappointment before leaving. There was to be no miraculous finish: a single came when six were needed off the last ball. Rana had bowled a terrific final over. Tamil Nadu, which ended on 141 for eight, had to settle for three points for the first-innings lead. Haryana collected one point.
Haryana — 1st innings: 348
Tamil Nadu — Ist innings: 403
Haryana — 2nd innings: R. Dewan c Prasanna b Aushik Srinivas 51, N. Saini c Prasanna b Gupta 54, A. Khod b Yomahesh 19, M. Sharma c Vasudevadas b Aushik Srinivas 4, S. Rana b Yomahesh 21, P. Tehlan b YoMahesh 2, P. Pawar c Kaushik Gandhi b YoMahesh 4, A. Mishra b Yomahesh 14, D. Singh lbw b Gupta 10, A. Vashisht (not out) 0, Y. Chahal b Yomahesh 0; Extras (b-5, lb-5, nb-8, w-3) 21. Total (in 75 overs) 200.
Fall of wickets: 1-114, 2-114, 3-123, 4-161, 5-164, 6-170, 7-181, 8-198, 9-200, 10-200.
Tamil Nadu bowling: Balaji 7-0-19-0, Yomahesh 16-4-47-6, Sunny Gupta 17-3-44-2, Aushik Srinivas 26-9-52-2, Aparajith 4-0-12-0, Abhinav 2-0-6-0, Kaushik Gandhi 3-0-10-0.
Tamil Nadu — 2nd innings: A. Mukund run out 7, D. Karthik c Rana b Chahal 55, K. Shri Vasudevadas c Rana b Dhruv Singh 8, R. Prasanna c Dhruv Singh b Rana 11, M. Vijay run out 42, S. Gupta run out 1, L. Balaji run out 0, V. Yomahesh lbw b Rana 2, M. Kaushik Gandhi (not out) 0, B. Aparajith (not out) 1; Extras (b-4, lb-4, nb-1, w-5) 14. Total (for eight wkts. in 13 overs) 141.
Fall of wickets: 1-23, 2-32, 3-68, 4-107, 5-119, 6-121, 7-140, 8-140.
Haryana bowling: Rana 6-0-54-2, Dhruv Singh 3-0-26-1, Y. Chahal 3-0-26-1, Mishra 1-0-27-0 .