December 26, 2013 3:15:40 am
Himachal Pradeshs meek surrender on the final day saw Maharashtra record a 10-wicket victory. On a pitch where batsmen needed to show patience to score runs,the visitors threw their bat around to go from 97/1 to 319 all out. The home team went past the winning target of 60 without losing a wicket.
The day started with Himachals overnight batsmen,Varun Sharma and Paras Dogra,looking circumspect. Dogra,who started day four on 41,was watchful and sure as he brought up his 19th first-class half-century with a perfectly placed cut-shot. However,his partner,Sharma,struggled as the pacers regularly troubled him. Finally a Shrikant Mundhe delivery,one which seamed-in a touch,trapped the right-hander plumb in front.
The approach adopted by the Himachal batsmen,with their team still trailing by a 140-run margin,defied logic. Abhinav Bali,who joined Dogra at the crease,seemed to have thrown caution to the winds,as he went about smacking the pacers on the up through the covers and even hitting through the line. Bali was dismissed for a brisk 54 but the rest of the batsmen didnt last that long.
Anupam Sanklecha,playing his third game of the season,was impressive. He moved the ball away from the batsman and also generating substantial bounce. The 31-year-old snapped up Dogra with a ball that darted away.
BRIEFSCORES: Himachal Pradesh 228 & 319 (P Dogra 62,Sanklecha3/70) vs Maharashtra 488/6d & 63/0
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