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Gritty Saurashtra battle hard to spice up Ranji Trophy final

NAGPUR: Saurashtra batsmen survived nasty body blows from Umesh Yadav all over their gallant battle against Vidarbha within the Ranji Trophy final, which is now on even keel after third day.

Resuming at a precarious 158 for five, Saurashtra's lower order batsmen confirmed outstanding gumption and grit to take the first innings to 307, just 5 short of hosts' first innings overall.

With the first innings lead just about nullified, Vidarbha in their 2d innings lost skipper Faiz Fazal (10) and R Sanjay (16) to left-arm spinner Dharmendrasinh Jadeja (2/36) before finishing the day at 55 for two.

The hosts now lead by 60 runs with dependable Wasim Jaffer (five) and Ganesh Satish (24) on the crease.

There are six periods left within the fit and Saurashtra, who've had a happy knack of chasing down fourth innings totals, will for sure fancy their probabilities.

Overnight batsman Snell Patel (102) completed his first century of the season and when India pacer Umesh Yadav despatched him again after smacking one on his helmet, Saurashtra were still 128 runs away from Vidarbha's overall of 312 all out.

Patel had also taken one hit on his hand as Yadav gave the impression unplayable together with his uncooked tempo and bounce. The overweight wicket-keeper batsman was later taken for an MRI scan, which got here transparent.

Umesh did intimidate Saurashtra together with his small yet brute intermittent spells, all over which he also hit overnight batsman Prerak Mankad on his shoulder.

However, what followed after each Patel and Mankad's dismissals was an unusual fightback by Saurashtra's tail, which batted out two periods together with the prolonged one within the morning.

The crew was gasping for breath at 184 for seven but Kamlesh Makwana (27 off 61 balls) and Jadeja (23 off 32) added 38 runs for the eighth wicket stand.

Jadeja discovered even fluent drives off Umesh and conveniently lofted spinners to add some fast runs whilst Makwana was going stable, rotating the strike.

Off-spinner Akshay Wakhare broke the partnership by getting Makwana stuck within the first slip and Sarwate removed Jadeja in the same type to complete his five-wicket haul.

But there was no respite for the hosts as captain Jaydev Unadkat (46) then produced one of the most easiest knocks of his top notch profession by digging in his heels with Chetan Sakariya (28).

They piled on frustration of Vidarbha by batting for 26.five overs to add 60 runs for the last wicket as they got tantalisingly close to a first-innings lead.

Vidarbha drained all their choices but may not ruin Unadkat and Sakariya's dogged resistance.

Throughout his innings, Unadkat stored sweeping the spinners even as Sakaria was hit at the again of his helmet by a nasty Umesh bouncer in his gritty knock.

Vidarbha may most effective stay up for a mistake to occur and Unadkat's innings ended when he swept one instantly to sq. leg fielder Sanjay.

In Vidarbha's 2d essay, Sanjay survived a strong leg-before attraction, a stuck and bowled probability off Makwana before in spite of everything getting stumped by Jadeja, who had also bowled rival skipper.

In the morning session, Vidarbha hit the bottom at an wonderful place but Saurashtra clawed their way back.

Umesh banged it quick and speedy and had higher control over line but it was left-arm spinner Sarwate, who equipped the first breakthrough when he trapped Mankad, with a straighter one whilst the batsman performed for flip.

Patel even though stored going robust and got to the three-figure mark by sweeping Akshay Karnewar. After bowling 5 wicket-less overs from the North end, Umesh changed and succeeded in getting Patel stuck at the back of.

It was transparent that Patel, after taking a nasty blow above his proper ear, was not comfy and turned into tentative as he edged an away going delivery.

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