Manoj Tiwary and Ambati Rayudu both struck unbeaten half-centuries as Rest of India built on their lead against Mumbai in the Irani Cup.
The Rest took tea at 200 for three with their lead now at 317 runs with four sessions to play.
Tiwary (66 not out) an Rayudu (67 not out) started their partnership on a cautious note in the first hour after lunch, before picking up the rate. Mumbai spinners Ankeet Chavan and Vishal Dabholkar were selected for special treatment by the duo as they went about finding the gaps and clearing the rope.
Before lunch, Mumbai took two wickets and maintained the pressure on Rest of India on Day Four of the Irani Cup. The Rest were 83 for three at lunch with Manoj Tiwary and Ambati Rayudu at the crease.
Murali Vijay (35) and night watchman S Sreesanth (18) built on their overnight partnership and took the Rest's score to 60 in the first hour without further damage.
However, on the last ball of the 18th over, Sreesanth,who had batted well for his 18, was unfortunate to be run out after a fantastic direct hit from Rohit Sharma at point from a tough angle.
Immediately in the next over, Vijay, on 32, was dropped in fourth slip by substitute Kaustubh Pawar,who was on the field for Sachin Tendulkar.
Soon after, in the first over after drinks, Manoj Tiwary was dropped on one by keeper Aditya Tare off an inside edge. Dhawal Kulkarni was the bowler on both occasions.
Tamil Nadu batsman Vijay, who is among the many players vying for an India spot and scored a century in the first innings, did not make the most out of his extra in the second. In the 24th over, he played a loose shot off Shardul Thakur's length delivery straight to Rohit at cover. At 67 for three, the Rest were in a precarious position.
Tiwary was then joined by Hyderabad's Rayudu in the middle. The duo resisted the sustained pressure from the Mumbai seamers till lunch and went into the break with the Rest's lead at 200 runs.
Brief Scores: Rest of India 526 and 200 for 3 (Manoj Tiwary 66*, Ambati Rayudu 67*; Shardul Thakur 1 for 21) lead Mumbai 409 (Sachin Tendulkar 140*, Wasim Jaffer 80, Ajinkya Rahane 83; Harbhajan Singh 3 for 64, Abhimanyu Mithun 2 for 73) by 317 runs.
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First Published: February 9, 2013, 2:52 pm