The round three of the Ranji Trophy saw some exciting low scoring games like Services beating Tripura and also some impressive performance fro Delhi and Railways who registered comprehensive wins over Hyderabad and Mumbai respectively. Here is a combined eleven of the players that did well.
Shantanu Mishra (Odisha) - 110 vs Uttarakhand
After bowling out Uttarakhand for just 117, Odisha batsmen had the opportunity to bat them out of the game. But that could not happen as ODisha were 127-6 and the lead was just a slender 10 runs. However, Shantanu Mishra stepped up and batted very well with the tail to take Odisha’s first innings total to 256, himself scoring a brilliant century under pressure. Uttarakhand could not do much in their second innings as Odisha comfortably chased down a fourth-innings target of 63 to win the game by 10 wickets.
Shikhar Dhawan (Delhi) - 140 vs Hyderabad
India’s discarded opener in the red-ball cricket, Shikhar Dhawan had a point to prove on a green top that he was good enough to bat at the higher levels on bowler-friendly pitches. He scored a brilliant 140 which helped Delhi post a healthy first innings total. The bowlers then, lead by Ishant Sharma, ran through the batting order of Hyderabad twice as Delhi chased dound a small target of 84 very easily.
Kaushik Gandhi (Tamil Nadu) - 154 vs Madhya Pradesh
Tamil Nadu have bowled out for 149 in their first innings thanks to a brilliant six-wicket haul from Ishwar Pandey. In reply, Madhya Pradesh posted a daunting 333 in their first-innings with Tamil Nadu staring down the barrel of a possible innings defeat. However, Kaushik Gandhi played a blinder of a knock scoring 154 runs and successfully keeping the MP bowlers at bay for the large part of the day. Tamil Nadu were able to escape defeat ending the day on 377-7 and after heroic innings from Gandhi.
Saurabh Tiwary (Jharkhand) - 152* vs Haryana
In a game dominated by bad light, Haryana posted 371 in their first innings. Jharkhand in reply were strong enough as they ended the game on 408-5 thanks to a brilliant 152* from skipper Saurabh Tiwary. Tiwary made sure that there were no hiccups in Jharkhand’s batting and he kept the Haryana bowlers at bay.
Mohammad Saif (Uttar Pradesh) - 165 vs Saurashtra
Uttar Pradesh posted a mammoth total of 523 in reply to Saurashtra’s first innings score of 331. A lead of 192 runs was possible only because of the mammoth partnership between Akshdeep Nath (92) and more importantly Mohammad Saif (165). Saif played an attacking brand of cricket which brought quick runs towards the end of his innings and helped bolster the lead, thus helping Saurashtra lose by an innings at 72 runs.
N Jagadeesan (wk) (Tamil Nadu) - 54 vs Madhya Pradesh
Wicket-keeper N Jagadeesan also played a helpful hand of 54 alongside Kaushik Gandhi to boost the chances of Tamil Nadu saving the game. He was the only wicket-keeper who impressed in round three and thus gets his place at number six in this eleven.
Karn Sharma (c) (Railways) - 112* vs Mumbai
After bowling out Mumbai cheaply for 114, Railways had the chance to capitalize and score big. However, they were in deep trouble at one stage with the score 24-4. But skipper Karn Sharma came out to bat and after seeing off the initial threat from the Mumbai bowlers, took the game to them and smashed an unbeaten 112 which took the Railways well past the first innings score of Mumbai. In the end, the Railways managed to complete a famous win over Mumbai by eight wickets. Karn Sharma also plays as the skipper in this eleven.
Saurabh Kumar (Uttar Pradesh) - 39 runs and 10 wickets vs Saurashtra
Uttar Pradesh skipper Saurabh Kumar impressed everyone with his all-round show as he scored 39 vital runs with the bat and then picked up four wickets in the first innings and another six in the second innings, completely foxing the Saurashtra batsmen and handing them an innings defeat.
Ishant Sharma (Delhi) - 8 wickets vs Hyderabad
The veteran Ishant Sharma just showed what experience is all about as after having a decent first-innings total, he bamboozled the Hyderabad batsman, picking up four wickets in each innings thereby helping Delhi chase down a small target of 84 easily with seven wickets in hand.
Simarjeet Singh (Delhi) - 7 wickets vs Hyderabad
While Ishant Sharma showed what experience can do, young Simarjeet Singh supported him brilliantly by picking seven wickets in the game and the duo in tandem were too hot to handle for the Hyderabad batsmen.
Pradeep T (Railways) - 6 wickets vs Mumbai
One of the major reasons why Railways were able to pull off a memorable 10 wicket win over Mumbai was due to their batting collapse in the first innings. Pradeep T was the destroyer-in-chief as he picked up 6 wickets in the first innings giving away just 34 runs and putting Railways in a dominant position.