Ranji Trophy: Saurashtra in control after Sheldon Jackson’s ton, bowlers’ exploits against Rajasthan | Cricket News – Times of India

NEW DELHI: Saurashtra’s middle-order batsman Sheldon Jackson mirrored his senior teammate Cheteshwar Pujara‘s feat, notching up a century on day two. His resilient innings steered the defending champions to a commanding total exceeding 300 runs in the Ranji Trophy Group A clash against Rajasthan on Saturday.
However, the hosts found themselves in a precarious position by stumps, struggling at 159 for 6 in reply.
Jackson’s impressive knock of 116, combined with Pujara’s century on the opening day, propelled Saurashtra to a respectable total of 328 all out in 116.5 overs. Following their batting prowess, veteran left-arm spinner Dharmendrasinh Jadeja and Yuvrajsinh Dodiya wreaked havoc on the Rajasthan batting lineup, each claiming three wickets.
Despite the efforts of Jadeja and Dodiya, Rajasthan still trail the defending champions by 169 runs. Jadeja returned figures of 3/68 in 23 overs, while Dodiya bowled with finesse to secure three wickets for 62 runs.
The morning session belonged to Saurashtra, with the 37-year-old Jackson reaching his 21st first-class century after resuming at his overnight score of 78. His century, completed off 249 deliveries, comprised eight boundaries and four maximums before he was dismissed by left-arm spinner Kukna Ajay Singh.
A valuable contribution of 34 from Jadeja further bolstered Saurashtra’s innings, crossing the 300-run mark and adding pressure on Rajasthan.
For the hosts, Ajay Singh emerged as the most successful bowler with figures of 5/120, clinching his third five-wicket haul in first-class cricket. However, his inability to contain the flow of runs dimmed the shine of his achievement.
Rajasthan’s innings started on a shaky note as openers Yash Kothari and Sumit Godara departed cheaply after a prolonged struggle against the Saurashtra bowlers. Despite a brief partnership between captain Deepak Hooda and Kunal Rathore, their dismissals further dented Rajasthan’s chances of taking a first-innings lead.
In Pune, Vidarbha took a huge 231-run first-innings lead against Maharashtra after scoring 439 for 6 in 106 overs on day 2, with India player Karun Nair scoring an unbeaten 128 (18×4).
Maharashtra’s first innings had folded at 208 on the opening day itself with Aditya Sarwate taking three wickets.
Vidarbha opener Dhurav Shorey was unlucky to miss a century, getting caught by Kedhar Jahdav off Ashay Palkar at 92, though he and Yash Rathod (42) put together a 111-run partnership to set a solid foundation.
Another century partnership (149 runs) between Karun Nair and skipper Akshay Wadkar (90) for the fifth wicket, helped Vidarbha take a massive first-innings lead.
Brief Scores:
In Jaipur: Saurashtra 228 in 116.5 overs (Cheteshwar Pujara 110; Sheldon Jackson 116; K Ajay Singh 5/120, Aniket Choudhary 4/33) vs Rajasthan 159 for 6 in 61 overs (Deepak Hooda 36, Kunal Singh Rathore 33; Dharmendrasinh Jadeja 3/68, Yuvrajsinh Dodiya 3/62).
In Pune: Maharashtra 208 all out vs Vidarbha 439 for 6 in 106 overs (Dhruv Shorey 92, Karun Nair batting 128, Akshay Wadkar 90; Ashay Palkar 2/100).
In Jamshedpur: Haryana 509 in 134.5 overs (Ankit Kumar 109, Himanshu Rana 82, Rahul Tewatia 144, Sumit Kumar 86; Anukul Roy 5/80) vs Jharkhand 119 for 9 in 38.2 overs (Jayant Yadav 4/35, Sumit Kumar 3/9).
In Ahmedabad: Manipur 67 and 51 for 6 in 32 overs (Arjun Sharma 2/5, Pulkit Narang 2/2) vs Services 333 in 106.1 overs (Ravi Chauhan 108, Rajat Paliwal 122; Bishworjit Konthoujam 3/97, Bikash Singh 3/95).
(With inputs from PTI)

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