Gautam Gambhir scored 95 to lead Delhi in the semi-finals     Getty Images
Gautam Gambhir scored 95 to lead Delhi in the semi-finals Getty Images

Gautam Gambhir, who had failed in the first innings, went on to hit 95 and helped Delhi chase 217 against Madhya Pradesh in the second quarter-final of the 2017-18 Ranji Trophy. Delhi will now face Bengal in the semi-final.

The second-wicket stand

After losing Gambhir early in the first innings, Kunal Chandela (81) and Dhruv Shorey (78) rose for the occasion and added 145 runs for the second wicket.

The middle-order also contributed 163 with every batsman scoring above 40. These contributions allowed Delhi to take a first-innings lead of 67. Mihir Hirwani picked up a five-for for Madhya Pradesh, but couldn t restrict Delhi from taking lead.

Gambhir s heroics

Delhi bowlers did well to bowl out Madhya Pradesh for 283. Harpreet Singh s 78 helped Madhya Pradesh set a total of 216. Vikas Tokas came as a night watchman ahead of Gambhir to bat at the end of Day 4.

Delhi needed 209 to win on Day Five; Tokas was out early, bringing the experienced Gambhir at the crease. Gambhir, who missed out in the first innings, scored a match-winning innings of 95 before getting run out. His opening partner Chandela scored 57, adding 98 for the second wicket. The score was 204 when Gambhir got out. Nitesh Rana came to bat to complete the formalities. Delhi won by 7 wickets in the post-lunch session to enter the semi-finals of Ranji 2017-18.

Brief scores:

Madhya Pradesh 338 (Harpreet Singh 107*; Manan Sharma 4 for 46) and 283 (Harpreet Singh 78; Vikas Mishra 4 for 59) lost to Delhi 405 (Kunal Chandela 8; Mihir Hirwani 5 for 89) and 217 for 3(Gautam Gambhir 95) by 7 wickets.