Delhi v Rest of India: Irani Trophy Cricket 2008-09

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Irani Trophy Cricket 2008-09

Irani Trophy, Day 3: Rest of India beat Delhi to lift Irani Trophy

Rest of India (ROI) lifted the Irani Trophy beating Ranji Trophy champions Delhi by 187 runs on the fourth day at Vadodara on Saturday.
Chasing 378 to win, Delhi were bowled out for 190 as Gautam Gambhir's valiant 91 went in vain. ROI, who made 252 runs in the first innings, managed to reach 302 in the second to take a 377-run lead. The Ranji Trophy champions were skittled out for 177 in the first innings. Resuming at the overnight score of 113 for three, Delhi batsmen failed to show patience to adjust to the slow nature of the track and the innings folded in little more than two hours.
After the third day's play, the writing was on the wall for the Ranji Trophy winners as only a miracle could have saved them. But it was not to be. An injured Aakash Chopra came out to bat with overnight batsman Gambhir raising hopes of a fight-back in the Delhi camp. The hope was short-lived as Chopra didn't trouble the scorers and departed in the second over after Zaheer Khan rattled his stumps.
Then on it was just a matter of time for the Delhi team, as ROI's spin-twin Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh tormented the tail. Harbhajan returned with figures of 4/31 while skipper Kumble was a miser with his 3/19. With wickets tumbling at other end, Gambhir fought a lonely battle aggressively. His 173-ball innings, which was studded with 12 boundaries, came to an end when he edged Kumble to wicketkeeper Dhoni.

Irani Trophy, Day 2: Munaf leads Rest of India fightback

Munaf Patel turned the tables on Delhi with a four-wicket haul as the Ranji Trophy champions collapsed for 177 in reply to Rest of India's (ROI) 252 in the first innings on the second day of the Irani Trophy match at Vadodara Thursday.
ROI went on tighten their grip on the match after that as they reached 99 for one by stumps, an overall lead of 174 runs with three full days of play left at the Reliance Stadium. Rahul Dravid (34 not out) and Subramanium Badrinath (33 not out) were at the crease after Pradeep Sangwan gave Delhi their lone breakthrough having Wasim Jaffer (21) caught off Akash Chopra.
Resuming at the overnight 21 for no loss, Delhi were tottering at 131 for five at lunch after Munaf struck claiming three for 23. Opener Gautam Gambhir (5) went in the second over of the day, caught in the slips by Dravid off Zaheer Khan.
Munaf then sent back well-settled Aakash Chopra (42), who added 58 runs with skipper Virender Sehwag (43) for the second wicket. Chopra's 68-ball stay ended when he edged one to Mohammad Kaif at second slip. Munaf then removed Virat Kohli (4), caught by a diving Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
Sehwag played some big shots before falling to Anil Kumble, while Munaf struck again in the very next over to remove Mithun Manhas (4), also caught by Dhoni. Harbhajan Singh (2-32) dismissed Puneet Bisht and Chetanya Nanda before Anil Kumble (2-34) wrapped up the Delhi innings, trapping Ishant Sharma leg before.

Irani Trophy, Day 1: Delhi dismiss Rest Of India for 252

Delhi bowlers wrecked the Rest Of India (ROI) batting, dismissing them for 252 in the first innings on day one of Irani Trophy at Vadodara on Wednesday.
Ishant Sharma (3-22) bent his back to extract bounce from the docile track to trouble India's mainline batsmen. He was well supported by young left-arm pacer Pradeep Sangwan (3-57) and leg-spinner Chetanya Nanda who got the ball to turn and bounce to claim three for 60. Openers Akash Chopra (16) and Gautam Gambhir (4) were at the crease at stumps as Delhi ended the day at 21.
For ROI, Wasim Jaffer scored a half century while Rahul Dravid, surprisingly send in to open the batting, scored a wobbly 46. The rest of the batsmen looked rusty and uncomfortable out in the middle. The openers gave a cautious start to the innings with a 77-run stand. Dravid bided his time as Ishant bowled a terrific first spell. The lanky fast bowler gave only three runs from his five overs, bowling three maidens, though his rewards came later.
Dravid took 34 balls to reach the double figures while Jaffer broke the shackles with two consecutive boundaries off Pradeep Sangwan's first over with a wristy flick to mid-wicket and a fluent cover drive. Nanda broke the partnership when Jaffer drove the leg-spinner uppishly to be caught at short-extra cover. Jaffer's knock included five boundaries. ROI were 105 for one at the end of first session. Soon after the lunch, Ishant ended Dravid's stay in the middle with a sharp incoming delivery to get him legbefore. Dravid's 46 came off 95 balls with four boundaries.
Ishant struck again when Subramaniam Badrinath drag a delivery on to his stumps as ROI slumped to 3-127. V.V.S Laxman (21) and Mohammad Kaif (29) tried to build a partnership but could not do much. Nanda got rid of Laxman who tried to hit him over the mid-wicket while skipper Virender Sehwag removed Kaif. Sangwan then forced Mahendra Singh Dhoni to edge to slip to expose the tail.

Delhi v Rest of India: Irani Trophy 2008-09 at Vadodara

Indian players face the test at Irani Cup

The Irani Cup match beginning at Vadodara today will be the last opportunity for players from Rest of India and Ranji Trophy champions Delhi to impress the selectors before the four-Test series against Australia kicks off.
Delhi, led by in-form Virender Sehwag, looks a balanced side on paper but the star-filled Rest of India under Anil Kumble will be tough to match.
Sachin Tendulkar’s pull-out from the match has deprived him of some useful match practice while Mohammad Kaif will be trying to fill the place created by the omission of Sourav Ganguly. Rahul Dravid would want to end his long run-drought and also prove that he is still good at the Test level.
Another batsman who would be closely watched is Wasim Jaffer, who had a terrible run in Australia and the home series against South Africa. The race for the openers slot is open with both Akash Chopra and Virat Kohli making a case for themselves with their performance in Mohammad Nissar Trophy last week. As of now Gautam Gambhir appears to partner Sehwag in the first Test starting in Bangalore from October 9. In the bowling department, RP Singh and Munaf Patel would want to put up a solid show and get a call-up for the first Test.

Irani Trophy Cricket 2008-09

Delhi v Rest of India: Irani Trophy 2008-09 at Vadodara


Result: Rest of India won by 187 runs
Rest of India: 302/10 in 92.5 ovs & 252/10 in 81.3 ovs
Delhi: 177/10 in 57 ovs & 190/10 in 60.5 ovs

Editor: Nishanth Gopinathan.