The stage was set for a thrilling clash between first time Ranji finalists Vidarbha against seven-time Champions Delhi. On the first day of the final, Vidarbha captain Faiz Fazal opted to bowl first, seeing the pitch at Holkar Stadium in Indore was little on the greener side. Replacing Umesh Yadav, who left his side to join India squad for the upcoming Test series against South Africa, was the debutant fast bowler Aditya Thakare.
Fazal gave the first over to Thakare, who repaid his captain’s faith by getting the opener Kundal Chandela out on the fifth ball without scoring a run. Chandela took another wicket in the first session of in-form batsman Nitish Rana, as Delhi slumped to 89 for 3 at Lunch.
Rajneesh Gurbani, who took 12 wickets in the semifinal against Karnataka, struck immediately in the second session as he got the wicket of captain Rishabh Pant. With Vidarbha looking in absolute control at 99/4, the onus to settle Delhi came on to Himmat Singh and Dhruv Shorey who had kept one end safe in spite of seeing wickets fall on the other end.
The duo quickly added on 105 runs, as Singh scored a brisk fifty, before he was caught behind on 66 on a tremendous delivery by Rajneesh Gurbani who got his 2nd wicket in the day.
But Shorey ensured that his side does not lose out on the momentum set up by him and Singh and went on to score his second first-class cricket century. The 25-year old remained not out throughout the day as he scored 123* runs and took Delhi’s total to 271/6 at stumps. He will start the innings with Vikas Mishra who remained in the middle with him in the final session.