Gujarat bagged three points to consolidate its position in second place in Group A after a first-innings lead proved crucial in their Round 2 Ranji Trophy 2018-19 match against Chhattisgarh on Thursday. Gujarat, who had defeated Baroda by nine wickets in their previous round, are neck and neck on nine points with table-toppers Saurashtra, sitting with a higher net run-rate.

Resuming their day at 366/7, adrift by 172 runs, Chhattisgarh lost their eighth wicket in Shivendra Singh, who was run out by Manprit Juneja for 52. Vishal Singh, the overnight centurion, ended a fine innings at 159 after left-arm pacer Arzan Nagwaswalla had him caught behind by Dhruv Raval to pocket his fourth wicket. Vishal’s 197-ball knock was laced with 10 boundaries and 12 hits over the fence.

Chhattisgarh were bundled out for 420, still trailing by 115 runs, with Pankaj Rao adding just six to the total after he was dismissed by Piyush Chawla. For Gujarat, Nagwaswalla was the pick of the bowlers with four for 66 in his 21 overs.

In their second dig, Gujarat were helped to 167/5 when stumps were drawn on the final day, courtesy half centuries from Priyank Panchal and Juneja. Rao accounted for the wickets of openers Samit Gohil (21) and Panchal, while Shivendra Singh was responsible to send Bhargav Merai (4) and Rujul Bhatt (7) back to the pavilion.

Brief scores: Gujarat 538/7 dec & 167/5 dec versus Chhattisgarh 420 (Vishal Singh 159; Arzan Nagwaswalla 4/66) ends in a draw