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  • 2:38 PM IST

    Live: GREEN 277: And it all comes to end. India Green pulled off a great effort in the second innings with the bat unlike the collapse in the first. Abhinav Mukund and Sudip Chatterjee scored individual centuries to take the total to 486. Kuldeep Yadav’s 6-wicket-haul sealed the deal for them. Suresh Raina remained the lone fighter for the Green in the second innings, scoring a 90 but that could not help them win the match.
    OUT! Pragyan Ojha c Mukund b Wakhare 7 (13)
    OUT! Suresh Raina c Singh b Kuldeep Yadav 90 (101)

Suresh Raina (R) is watched by wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel

Hello and welcome to CricketCountry’s live cricket blog and live cricket updates’ post on the third day’s play in the ongoing match of the Duleep Trophy 2016-17, between India Red and India Green. This is the first time the revolutionary pink cricket ball is being used in India, as the Duleep Trophy 2016-17 marks the testing phase of the ball which will be used in day-night Test cricket in the country. It was expected that India and New Zealand would play one of their three Tests with the pink cricket ball, but the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) decided to test the ball first before making the national side play with it.

India Red and India Green are involved in a very interesting battle to register their first win in the Duleep Trophy 2016-17. After an ordinary start by both the teams, the batsmen got their eye in and some splendid batting performances were witnessed in the ongoing match, which marks the beginning of the start of the Indian domestic season 2016-17.

India Green were set a target of close to 500 runs. They made a terrific start with their opening batsman Robin Uthappa taking the attack to the opposition and the India Green getting off to a brisk start. At a certain point of time, the India Green were cruising at more than six runs an over, and it was turning out to be an interesting first match of the Indian season.

It was the left-handed chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav who ripped apart the India Green batting line-up. After a brisk start, Ishwar Pandey had provided India Red the breakthrough with the wicket of Jalaj Saxena. Yadav then took charge, and accounted for the wickets of Uthappa (72), Parthiv Patel (21), Rajat Paliwal (0), Saurabh Tiwary (31) and Sandeep Sharma (0).

However, India Green lost their way on the third day of their Duleep Trophy 2016-17 match. They were tottering at 217 for 7, and need another 280 runs to win this match with three wickets left in their hands. India Green captain Suresh Raina was unbeaten on 42 off 53 balls, in which the left-handed limited-overs specialist smacked two sixes and as many boundaries. Veteran Indian domestic cricketer Ashok Dinda was batting alongside his captain. Dinda was on 10 off 6 balls, for which the right-hander hit two boundaries.

Yadav became the third bowler to take a five-wicket haul with the pink cricket ball in Indian domestic cricket history. Yadav’s five-wicket haul followed that of Nathu Singh and Shreyas Gopal, who returned with the figures of 28.5-4-123-5 in India Red’s second innings to become the second bowler to take a five-for with the pink cricket ball.

Batting first, India Red were bowled out for mere 161 as the red ball somehow played a psychological effect on the minds of the batsmen. Left-handed Tamil Nadu batsman Abhinav Mukund, who played for India on their four-Test series in England, is not playing in the ongoing Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL) 2016. Mukund scored a brilliant 77 in India Red’s first innings, ensuring that his team gets some runs when the others kept failing around him.

Right-arm fast bowler Anureet Singh was the second-highest scorer in India Red’s first innings, as he managed 32 off 21 balls with the help of six boundaries and one six. India Red’s batting performance in the first innings was so horrible that out of their top six batsmen, only one managed to get into double figures.

Sandeep Sharma returned with the figures of 15-3-62-4, as he narrowly missed on becoming the first bowler ever to take a five-wicket haul with the pink cricket ball in Indian domestic cricket. But perhaps the most destructive of the India Green bowlers was Pragyan Ojha, as he ensured that the India Red do not last long in the middle. Ojha had the figures of 5.2-0-19-3.

In their reply, India Green were equally horrendous as they ended up conceding a tender lead of 10 runs. Nathu Singh, the right-arm pacer who played against South Africa last year in one of the tour matches, became the first bowler to take a five-for against India Red. Nathu was as destructive as a fast bowler can be, returning with the figures of 12.4-0-53-6. Chinaman Kuldeep Yadav claimed three wickets in his 15 overs in which he gave away 32 runs and also bowled as many as four maidens.

With a 10-run lead, India Red had their confidence back as they batted brilliantly in the second innings. Srikar Bharat fell for 20 off as many balls, but it was time for Mukund to carry on where he left in the first innings. Mukund notched up the first century on the Indian soil against the pink ball, hitting 20 boundaries. Mukund faced as many as 221 balls for 169 runs.

Mukund and Bengal opener Sudeep Chatterjee did the groundwork for the India Red team, which is being led by Yuvraj Singh. Mukund and Chatterjee were involved a massive 240-run stand, which ended all chances for India Green to make a comeback. The scoring rate of their partnership showed that even on a green top wicket and against the pink ball, which moves around a lot because of its manufacturing method, batsmen can still get runs if they apply themselves on the wicket. Chatterjee faced 182 balls and scored 114, which was studded with 14 boundaries.

Talking about the senior players involved in this clash, both Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina continued to have an ordinary game. Yuvraj fell for 4 in the first innings to Rajpoot, he had a bizarre outing. Yuvraj faced 30 balls, and scored  10 runs, which came off a six and a boundary.

The right-handed India Red batsman Gurkeerat Singh Mann too proved his mettle, as he scored 82 off 96 balls which broke the back of India Green. Gurkeerat struck 13 boundaries and one six playing a rapid knock. He deserved a century for the way he batted, bit missed out unfortunately.