Services are on the brink of conceding the first innings lead to Hyderabad as they were 360 for 9 at stumps on the penultimate day of their Ranji Trophy encounter, trailing Hyderabad by 220 runs.
Despite a gritting ton by middle-order batsman Shamsher Yadav (104) and 90 by opener Nakul Verma, the other batsmen struggled to score at the MCA’s Bandra-Kurla complex ground while responding to Hyderabad’s first innings mammoth total of 580 for 9 declared.
Resuming at 77 for no loss, Hyderabad pacers struck early as Ravi Chuahan, who just added six runs to his overnight score, was cleaned up by Md Siraj.
Soon after that, Aanshul Gupta, who retired hurt yesterday, was dismissed at 10 when he edged to the keeper off medium pacer Ravi Kiran with the scoreboard reading 2-86.
Kiran stuck for the second time when he trapped Azaruddin Bloch leg before the wicket for 10.
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In the early hours, Verma got a ‘life’ when he was dropped by Hyderabad skipper S Badrinath on 34 at gully.
Verma, who had paced his innings well, missed a century after being trapped leg before the wicket by spinner Akash Bhandari after lunch.
Another left-handed batsman Rahul Singh played variety of shots including a pull, on drive and cover drive and ably supported Shamsher Yadav. He became Kiran’s third scalp after edging to the keeper on 49 soon after tea.
Meanwhile, Yadav anchored the Services innings in his brave knock of 104 which comprised 13 boundaries and a six. He eventually was sent back to the pavilion by Bhandari and became the ninth man to be dismissed.
Vikas Hathwala (5), Vikas Yadav (6) also fell cheaply. Diwesh Pathania made a quick 15 off 32 balls but was caught by Bhandari off Mehdi Hasan.
Especially after tea, Hyderabad pacers were rewarded for bowling a disciplined line and length and consistently in the right areas.
For Hyderabad, Kiran was the pick of the bowlers with three wickets while Md Siraj and Akash Bhandari scalped two wickets each.
At stumps, both no 10 and 11 batsman Raushan Raj and Raj Bahadar Pal were unbeaten on 0.
Hyderabad have a substantial chance to finish things off early morning and take first innings lead to grab three points in the match which is otherwise headed for a draw.
Brief Scores: Hyderabad 580/9 declared. Services (360/9 -Shamsher Yadav – 104, Nakul Verma 90; Ravi Kiran – 3-68, Akash Bhandari – 2-62).