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Bowlers’ Premier Performance

<p>In their Ranji Trophy semifinal here today, Mumbai emerged victorious on the first day after a lackluster effort from Tamil Nadu with brilliant ball handling from Tushar Deshpande and Shardul Thakur.</p>
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<p>Batting first was a bad idea for Tamil Nadu captain B Sai Kishore, as the visitors were bowled out for only 146 in the first session at the BKC Ground thanks to Deshpande and Thakur making life difficult for the visiting hitters.</p>
<p>If it was any comfort, Mumbai reduced a sizeable portion of their first-inning deficit, reaching 45/2 at stumps to trail by 101 runs despite Tamil Nadu scoring twice with the ball.</p>
<p>Mumbai’s opening pair of Bhupen Lalwani (15) and Prithvi Shaw (5) were defeated by Musheer Khan (24 not out) and nightwatchman Mohit Avasthi (1) at the crease.</p>
<p>Mumbai was still in control even after Shaw was dismissed early by Kuldeep Sen and Lalwani was caught for the second wicket by Sai Kishore.</p>
<p>Mumbai emerged as the stronger team due to their bowlers extracting more assistance and their batsmen not finding the going as difficult as the visitors on a track that featured movement off the surface as well as turn for spinners.</p>
<p>Tamil Nadu, the shellStartled by a poor start to their first semifinal in seven years, they were unable to rally and lost soon after tea, even in the face of a remarkable comeback from Washington Sundar (43) and Vijay Shankar (44).</p>
<p>Avesh’s “Fab Four”</p>
<p>Nagpur: The Madhya Pradesh speed bowling outfit, headed by Avesh Khan, produced accurate lengths of ball on a ground that provided sufficient carry to dismiss Vidarbha for a pitiful 170 on the first day and seize control of their semifinal today.</p>
<p>The best bowler for the MP was Avesh (4/49), who had strong backing from Venkatesh Iyer (2/28), Kulwant Khejroliya (2/38) and others.</p>
<p>By the end of the first innings, MP was down 123 runs at 47/1.</p>
<p>The VCA Stadium surface had such a lovely green tint to it since MP only used spin for 2.4 of the 56.4 overs they bowled.</p>
<p>the day.</p>
<p>For a short while, left-arm spinner Kumar Kartikeya filled in as the spinner after dismissing Umesh Yadav, the final man.</p>
<p>For the most part of the proceedings, other spinners in their ranks, such as offie Saransh Jain, stayed in the background.</p>
<p>Karun Nair, who scored 63 off 105 balls, was the main contributor to Vidarbha’s poor performance.</p>
<p>Vidarbha often lost wickets, with their greatest partnership being a 36-run stand for the second wicket between Atharva Taide (39 off 63 balls) and Aman Mokhade (13 off 75 balls).</p>
<p>Brief scores: Vidarbha: 170 all out in 56.4 overs (Karun 63, Taide 39; Avesh 4/49, Khejroliya 2/38, Venkatesh 2/28) vs MP: 47/1 in 20 overs (Mantri 26*, Gawli 10*); Tamil Nadu: 146 in 64.1 overs (Shankar 44, Washington 43; Deshpande 3/24, Kotian 2/10, Shardul 2/48); Mumbai: 45/2 in 17 overs (Lalwani 15, Musheer 24*; Sai K Kishore 1/3).</p>