Vidarbha set Karnataka a target of 198 runs

Vidarbha set Karnataka a target of 198 runs

Vidarbha set Karnataka a target of 198 runs on the fourth day of the Ranji Trophy semifinal on Wednesday.

A gutsy 55 from Aditya Sarwate and his two crucial partnerships – first a 38-run with Umesh Yadav (13) and then a last-wicket stand of 30 with Rajneesh Grubani (30) – steered Vidarbha to a decent total of 313 all out.

Stuart Binny (3/74) was the star with the ball in the morning for Karnataka with his quality performance while Abhimanyu Mithun (1/47) and Vinay Kumar (3/71) were also disciplined.

In an action-packed first session, Vidarbha resumed their second innings from 195/4 with a lead of 79 runs. But they lost their way by losing three quick wickets. Binny got the breakthrough for Karnataka with the first ball of his spell when he dismissed Akshay Wadkar (28) caught at first slips.

In the very next over, Abhimayu Mithun, who had built the pressure by drying up the runs, got the vital wicket of Ganesh Satish. Ganesh, whose unbeaten 71 had kept Vidarbha alive in the contest, top-edged a pull straight to S Arvind at fine leg. Ganesh departed for 81 (168b, 10x4) and it appeared like curtains would fall on the Vidarbha innings soon but Sarwate staged a superb rear-guard act.

He stayed patient for the loose balls and shepherded the tail-enders well. First, it was Umesh Yadav who offered him support. The India speedster also hit a four and a maximum to frustrate Karnataka. Shreyas Gopal bagged the wicket of Umesh but Karnataka were made to wait thanks to the determined combination of Sarwate and Gurbani.

A lead above 200 looked possible but skipper Vinay removed Sarwate leg before wicket in the second over after the new ball was taken much to the relief of Karnataka.

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