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Mumbai huff and puff their way into final

Mumbai entered the final of the Ranji Trophy by virtue of their 258-run first innings lead over Saurashtra in the drawn semi-final at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, reports G Krishnan.

cricket Updated: Jan 08, 2009 00:50 IST
G Krishnan

Better late than never. It took Mumbai 42 overs to dismiss the remaining five Saurashtra batsmen on the last day to enter the Ranji Trophy final, for the 42nd time, on the basis of their 258-run first innings lead. Mumbai will go for their 38th title against Uttar Pradesh in Hyderabad next week.

Mumbai heaved a sigh of relief when last man Balakrishna Jadeja was adjudged caught behind off Ramesh Powar, 34 minutes after lunch.

Considering that bad light and rain brought an early end to the match, Mumbai were lucky to seal the deal when they did. With only Jaydev Shah left to bat with the bowlers, Saurashtra weren't expected to last long when they resumed at 247 for five. They were eventually all out for 379.

Dhawal Kulkarni struck twice in the day's third over, triggering hopes of an early finish. Shah failed to clear backward point fielder and Sagar Jogiyani edged to slip. Then the eighth-wicket pair of Kamlesh Makvana (56 not out) and Rakesh Dhruv (49) raised 103 in over two hours.

Eventually Powar, who bowled 13 overs unchanged, struck but largely thanks to the umpire.

Amish Saheba ruled Dhruv leg before when the ball hit the boot outside the leg stump. Saheba then failed to notice broad daylight between bat and ball and ruled Jadeja caught behind, ending the innings.

Mumbai: 637 for 6 decl and 42 for 1

Saurashtra 1st innings: (247 for 5 overnight): Shah c sub (Chavan) b Kulkarni 49, Makvana not out 56, Jogiyani c Sharma b Kulkarni 0, Dhruv lbw b Powar 44, Jobanputra c Jaffer b Powar 16, Jadeja c Samant b Powar 2; Extras (b-5, lb-5, w-1, nb-17) 30

Total (all out, 130 overs) 379; Fall of wkts: 1-41 2-52 4-151 5-245 6-255 7-256 8-359 9-377; Bowling: Zaheer 31-11-72-2, Agarkar 23-9-62-1, Kulkarni 25-6-82-3, Powar 35-5-108-4, Nayar 14-1-41-0, Sharma 1-0-2-0, Muzumdar 1-0-2-0.