Tamil Nadu let Madhya Pradesh off the hook allowing them to reach 224 for 7 after having them at 67 for 5 at one stage at close on the first day of the Ranji Trophy Group “C” match in Indore on Friday.
Ankit Sharma (75 batting) and Ankit Dane (63) came together with the team in trouble after being sent into bat by Tamil Nadu. They defied K Vignesh (3 for 27) and M Mohammed (2 for 46) and steadied the innings.
Tamil Nadu, which needs to win its two remaining matches outright to stand a chance of advancing to the knockouts, started in right earnest as Rajat Patidar was caught by skipper Abhinav Mukund off Mohammed for 11.
Mohammed struck again to remove Aditya Shrivastava (13) to leave Madhya Pradesh at 40 for 2. Fast-medium bowler Vignesh, one of the finds of the
previous season for Tamil Nadu, scalped three batsmen in the space of 27 runs in a superb spell. First, he had the talented young Shubham Sharma caught behind for 8, before sending back Harpreet Singh Bhatia (4).
In the 27th over, he struck a big blow by dismissing the experienced Devendra Bundela, the captain for 20, putting Tamil Nadu in control. However, the two Ankits- Sharma and Dane-counterattacked and added runs quickly.
While Ankit Sharma had 12 hits to the boundary, Dane hit eight fours and a six before MS Washington Sundar sent back Dane to a catch by B Indrajith.Sundar struck again in his next over, getting Puneet Datey (0).
Ankit Sharma and Mihir Hirwani, son of former India leg-spinner Narendra Hirwani, saw the team through to stumps without any further loss.
Madhya Pradesh 224 for 7 in 80 overs (Ankit Sharma 75 batting, Ankit Dane 63, K Vignesh 3 for 27) vs Tamil Nadu.
At Ongole: Mumbai 248 for 6 in 90 overs (Prithvi Shaw 114, Siddhesh Lad 86, Abhishek Nayar 21 batting, B Ayyappa 3 for 87) vs Andhra Pradesh.
At Vadodara: Baroda 281 for 3 in 90 overs (Kedar Devdhar 104, Deepak Hooda 51, Vishnu Solanki 46 batting) vs Odisha.