Veteran batter Cheteshwar Pujara slammed his second hundred of the ongoing Ranji Trophy season, guiding Saurashtra to a comfortable 242 for four against Rajasthan on the opening day of their Group A match in Jaipur Friday. The 36-year-old, who has 103 Tests and 262 First-Class matches under his belt, hit nine shots to the fence during his 230-ball 110. It was his 62nd hundred in first class cricket. Pujara had scored a double hundred (243 not out), last month. Opting to bat, Saurashtra found themselves in a spot of bother after they were reduced to 74 for 3 in the 32nd over but Pujara and Sheldon Jackson (78 not out) then formed an alliance, adding 168 runs for the fourth wicket.
Pujara, who last played a Test in June 2023 — the World Test Championship final against Australia — was the last wicket to fall in the 90th over.
Jackson was at the crease at the draw of stumps and Arpit Vasavada (0) will join him in the middle when play resumes on Saturday.
Jackson’s unbeaten 176-ball innings was studded with six boundaries and two sixes.
For Rajasthan, left-arm spinner Kukna Ajay Singh (2/86) claimed two wickets, while Aniket Choudhary (1/24) and Manav Suthar (1/68) announced for one each.
Vidarbha Dominate Maharashtra
In Pune, Yash Thakur snapped three wickets as Vidarbha produced a disciplined bowling effort to dismiss Maharashtra for 208 and then reached 111 for one.
While fast bowler Thakur (3/68) rocked the top-order, pacer Lalit M Yadav (2/32) and left-arm spinner Aditya Sarwate (2/43) took two wickets each after their skipper Akshay Wadkar won the toss and elected to bowl.
Pavan Shah (35), Dhanraj Shinde (30) and Manoj Ingale (36) scored 30-plus scores but Maharashtra couldn’t weave any meaningful partnerships.
In reply,Dhruv Shorey (55 not out) scored an unbeaten fifty and was at the crease along with Yash Rathod (29 not out) at the break.
Delhi Recover To Score 264 Against Himachal Pradesh
Skipper Himmat Singh made a quick-fire 60 off 53 balls before the tail wagged to take Delhi to 264 all out against Himachal Pradesh on day one of their Ranji Trophy game in Dharamsala on Friday.
Pacer Vinay Galetiya took a five-wicket haul on a helping pitch and his new ball partner Vaibhav Arora struck thrice in the Group D contest.
Himachal Pradesh needed to bat 10 overs before stumps.
They reached 24 for one at close of play with rookie Delhi pacer Himanshu Chauhan trapping Prashant Chopra in front of the stumps.
Himachal would have been two down if wicketkeeper Anuj Rawat had taken a sharp chance offered by Praveen Thakur.
Himachal had put Delhi in to bat and made most of the conditions in the first session. At 20 for three, Delhi were staring at another batting collapse this season but recovered to post a decent total courtesy Himmat, Ayush Badoni (51 off 80), tailenders Priyanshu Vijayran (37 off 65) and Siddhant Sharma (36 off 37).
U-19 World Cup winning captain Yash Dhull was the third batter to be dismissed in the morning session. For someone who has not been able to score a half-century thus far in the season, Dhull (14) played away from his body to be caught behind.
His opening partner Anuj Rawat (6) was Galetiya’s first victim. Not sure whether to play or leave, Rawat ended up getting caught at second slip.
The 87-run stand between Himmat and Badoni stabilised Delhi’s innings. Himmat was on the offensive from the get go, smashing 10 fours and a six.
Jonty Sidhu put up plenty of resistance, consuming 106 balls for his 28. Kshitiz Sharma, whose place in the side has been questioned time and again, was out first out ball.
Siddhant played some bold strokes to take Delhi past 250.
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