Karnataka will need to do something spectacular to pull off a win over Baroda, while in soggy Cuttack the hosts will be praying for sunshine.
Lahli: Vidharba became the first team in the 2012-13 Ranji Trophy season to achieve an outright win, when they beat Haryana by eight wickets on Sunday to claim six points. Chasing 34, the visitors blew a chance to gain seven points when they lost an early wicket but eventually got home in 15 overs.
From an overnight 103 for 3, Haryana averted an innings defeat but failed to add enough pressure on Vidharba. A steady procession of wickets meant Haryana always struggled to forge partnerships – the best they could manage after the 80-run opening stand on Saturday was 36 for the last wicket – and if not for Amit Vashisht’s unbeaten 26 from No. 10 they would not have progressed from far from 128 for 8. Sandeep Singh was the chief beneficiary with 4 for 36 in 26 overs and each of the five bowlers used picked up at least one wicket. Haryana could only manage 100 runs on day three.
Set an easy target, Vidharba lost Aniruddha Chore and former India opener Shiv Sunder Das to Chanderpal Saini as they crept to 37 for 2 in 15 overs.
Vidharba 205 and 37 for 2 in 15 overs beat Haryana 55 (Umesh Yadav 5/18) and 183 in 79.4 overs (Sandeep Singh 4/36) by eight wickets
In Vadodara, Karnataka were denied a first-innings lead by Gagandeep Singh’s 5 for 49 but a shaky batting effort from the home team left Vinay Kumar’s team with a shot at victory. An interesting finish is on the cards if Karnataka can bowl out Baroda, who at 115 for 4 lead by 237, in the morning session on day four.
Baroda made a busy start to the morning session. First to go was Robin Uthappa for 82, bowled by left-arm spinner Bhargav Bhatt, and five runs later Firdaush Bhaja got Amit Verma. Stuart Binny battled hard with 55 but lacked support as rookie left-arm quick Gagandeep Singh picked up his third five-wicket haul in four matches to bowl Karnataka out for 284.
With a lead of 122, Baroda proceeded to lose both their openers for ducks. Kedav Devdhar was lbw to Vinay Kumar first ball of the innings and Aditya Waghmore was dismissed by Abhimanyu Mithun in the second over. Yusuf Pathan bagged a pair to further lift Karnataka’s spirits, but Abhimanyu Chauhan (52*) and Irfan Pathan (33*) prevented any further loss.
Baroda 406 and 115 for 4 in 22.2 overs lead Karnataka 284 in 109 overs (Robin Uthappa 82, Stuart Binny 55; Gagandeep Singh 5/49) by 237 runs
In the two overs of play possible in soggy Cuttack, Tamil Nadu lost Abhinav Mukund for 21 to slip to 67 for 3 before rain again forced an early abandonment of play.
Tamil Nadu 67 for 3 in 33.1 overs v Odisha