Cricket

Fazal cracks an unbeaten century

Keeps Vidarbha in the hunt for the first innings lead

Faiz Fazal led from the front with a superbly-paced unbeaten 126 (209b, 15x4, 3x6) to keep Vidarbha in the hunt to realise the first objective of taking the first innings lead against Hyderabad on the second day of the four-day Ranji Trophy Elite group match at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium here on Thursday.

In reply to Hyderabad’s first innings score of 272, Vidarbha finished the day at 242 for four, with captain Fazal still at the crease with his second century of the season.

Earlier, the home team, resuming at 239 for seven, could score only 33 runs more with 22 of them coming from Mohd. Siraj’s lusty blows.

In the morning, the focus was on young debutant Prateek Reddy, who was unbeaten on 76. But he missed a wonderful opportunity to score a century as he nicked a perfect length ball from pacer Aditya Thakare to the wicketkeeper on 83.

Early blows

And when Vidarbha batted, the ever-dependable pacer Ravi Kiran struck two early blows — trapping opener Akshay Kolhar leg before and geting rid of Aniruddha Choudhary who snicked one which was moving away to ’keeper K. Sumanth — to leave the team at 24 for two in the eighth over.

But, the man in form Ganesh Satish (65, 153b, 9x4 1x6) joined his skipper and the pair added 124 for the third wicket, which effectively pushed the hosts on the backfoot.

In the morning session, Fazal was at his fluent best, essaying some flowing drives off both pacers and spinners on either side of the wicket. After lunch, he was more cautious and saw his partner do most of the scoring.

Lacking support

That was the phase when Ravi Kiran once again lacked support from the other end. Siraj, Ravi Teja and Chama Milind, who tested Satish quite a few times angling the ball away from the batsman, failed to get the breakthroughs.

Consequently, Vidarbha wriggled out of the crisis and eventually managed to stay on top even as another debutant and young left-arm spinner Aniketh Reddy had the satisfaction of sending back a well-set Satish after tea — stumped smartly by Sumanth.

But, with Fazal staying put at one end, Hyderabad’s misery only piled up in the battle for survival to avoid relegation.

The scores:

Hyderabad — 1st innings: Tanmay Agarwal c Fazal b Thakur 5, Akshath Reddy c Wadkar b Gurbani 6, Buddhi Rahul c Wadkar b Gurbani 52, T. Ravi Teja c Wadkar b Thakur 44, Prateek Reddy c Wadkar b Thakare 83, K. Sumanth b Gurbani 1, Chama Milind b Thakur 4, G. Aniketh Reddy c Wadkar b Thakur 4, Mehdi Hasan c Wakhare b Thakare 30, Md. Siraj c Fazal b Thakare 22, Ravi Kiran (not out) 1, Extras (b-3, lb-12, nb-3, w-2,): 20; Total (in 94.5 overs): 272.

Fall of wickets: 1-17, 2-17, 3-97, 4-130, 5-136, 6-141, 7-151, 8-242, 9-253.

Vidarbha bowling: Gurbani 22-7-48-3, Thakare 22.5-7-70-3, Thakur 25-7-55-4, Wakhare 13-1-43-0, Sarvate 8-1-32-0, Choudhari 4-0-9-0.

Vidarbha — 1st innings: Faiz Fazal (batting) 126, Akshay Kolhar lbw b Ravi Kiran 3, Anidurddha Choudhari c Sumanth b Ravi Kiran 4, Ganesh Satish st. Sumanth b Aniket 65, Siddesh Wath c Sumanth b Siraj 28, Akshay Wadkar (batting) 9; Extras (lb-4, w-3): 7; Total (for four wts. in 75 overs): 242.

Fall of wickets: 1-16, 2-24, 3-148, 4-220.

Hyderabad bowling: Siraj 17-3-70-1, Ravi Kiran 13-6-19-2, Milind 13-3-44-0, Ravi Teja 7-1-26-0, Mehdi 10-2-34-0, Aniketh 15-3-45-1.

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Printable version | Feb 26, 2020 9:54:31 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/fazal-cracks-an-unbeaten-century/article30811075.ece

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