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Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag key as Delhi need 327 more runs to win against Punjab

Gautam Gambhir was unbeaten on 27 © PTI (File photo)
Gautam Gambhir was unbeaten on 22 © PTI (File photo)

 

New Delhi: Dec 24, 2013

 

Three wickets in the final session provided the Punjab team a clear edge over hosts Delhi in a Ranji Trophy group A encounter which looks poised for an exciting finish.

 

At stumps, Delhi were 60 for three chasing a tough target of 327 after Punjab scored 402 in their second innings with significant contributions from skipper Mandeep Singh (60), Gitansh Khera (49) and Siddharth Kaul (32 not out).

 

This was after opener Jiwanjot Singh (147) had laid the foundation scoring an impressive century yesterday.

 

It will be an interesting final day as Delhi will require to score 267 runs on the final day with only seven wickets in hand. Unmukt Chand (0) made a poor judgement as he didn’t offer a stroke to an inswinger from Sandeep Sharma.

 

Vaibhav Rawal (35) looked good during his hour-long stay before he was played on off Manpreet Gony. Mithun Manhas (0) had a poor match as he was bowled by an incoming delivery from seamer Jaskaran Singh.

 

Skipper Gautam Gambhir (22, 71 balls, 3×4) is battling it out in the middle with nightwatchman Ashish Nehra for company.

 

Virender Sehwag hasn’t yet come out but is expected to bat at the fall of the next wicket tomorrow morning.

 

It was day when Punjab batsmen totally dominated the proceedings with skipper Mandeep playing an important role. While Jiwanjot played his defensive game chipping away with singles and odd boundaries, Mandeep started attacking the Delhi bowlers.

 

He took on their best bet Nehra (4/101) pulling him for a six over mid-wicket and then lofted Rajat Bhatia in the next over for boundary over mid-on. Mandeep’s 80 came off 113 balls with eight fours and a six. The fourth wicket partnership with Jiwanjot yielded 159 runs and it was the foundation for the big lead for Punjab.

 

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