Gujarat hold upper-hand against Rest of India on Day Two    IANS
Gujarat hold upper-hand against Rest of India on Day Two IANS

Day Two of Irani Cup 2016-17 witnessed Rest of India (ROI) off to a slow start at Mumbai’s Brabourne Stadium. ROI lost early wicket, as Gujarat’s star bowler Chintan Gaja drew first blood, picking Abhinav Mukund cheaply for 8. Samit Gohil made no mistake at first slip. Mukund and his opening partner Akhil Herwadkar stitched 21 runs for the opening wicket, smashing 3 boundaries. ROI captain Cheteshwar Pujara, alongside Mukund, added 6 runs for the second wicket heading to lunch at 27 for 1. Herwadkar opened the account for ROI with a boundary towards mid-wicket fence. Mukund also tagged along and struck a boundary in the next over.

However, Gujarat’s star bowler Gaja, who took 8 wickets in Ranji final, maintained tight lines, itching to get his first wicket. He, though, achieved the same dismissing Mukund. Early morning session saw Gandhi and Hardik Patel adding 33 runs to their overnight score of 300. Gandhi alone scored 32 runs, including a six and 3 fours. After Gandhi perished for 169 (his best First-Class score) to Kaul, tail-enders Hardik and Ishwar Choudhary added 25 runs for the 10th wicket to help Gujarat post competitive total in the first innings. Among ROI bowlers, Pankaj and Kaul were at the top. They shared 9 wickets to wrap Gujarat innings at 358.

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On Day One, Gandhi struck a timely, maiden First-Class hundred and remained unbeaten on 136 to lift newly-crowned Ranji Trophy champions.

Gujarat, who opted to bat, were in trouble after the fall of their captain Parthiv Patel for 11 and then lost Dhruv Raval soon after the lunch break, before Gandhi and Juneja got together to help Gujarat bounce back in the game with their 109-run partnership.

Brief scores:

Gujarat 358 (Chirag Gandhi 169, Manpreet Juneja 47, Dhruv Raval 39, Priyank Panchal 30; Siddharth Kaul 5 for 86, Pankaj Singh 4 for 104, Akhil Herwadkar 1 for 13) lead Rest of India (Akhil Herwadkar 18*; Chintan Gaja 1 for 10) by 331 runs