Ranji Trophy 2023: Skipper Vasavada takes Saurashtra to final to face Bengal at Eden Gardens


At stumps on Day 4 of the semifinal, Karnataka was stationed at 123 with the loss of 4 wickets - with Nikin Jose and Shreyas Gopal there in the middle; however, Saurashtra from that state turned the tables to bag a spot in the big-fat finale. 

Jose's knock go in vain

For Karnataka, the number four batter Jose scored a magnificent 109 in the third innings, but it wasn't against the disciplinary bowling of Chetan Sakariya and Dharmendrasinh Jadeja, who shared 8 wickets between them.

Despite Jose's 161-ball century, the Mayank Agarwal-led unit tumbled for 234 in their second innings as no other batter - except Agarwal's 55 - helped in Karnataka's cause.

Captain leads from the front

Arpit Vasavada's Saurashtra got an advantage of gaining a first-innings lead of 120 runs as they only had to chase 115 runs in the last sessions on Day 5. 

Karnataka started exceptionally well and picked an early wicket of Snell Patel. Then, with Hardik Desia, Vishvaraj Jadeja gave stability to the chase. But the bowling side continued with their tight bowling to break the partnership and chip with regular wickets.

Saurashtra lost 5 wickets at the stage of 42 runs on board, and then the skipper Vasavada and Sakariya took charge and handled the innings very well and put up a partnership of 63 runs for the 6th wicket. 

The chasing team lost Sakariya, but Vasavada held the innings sensibly in the middle, stayed unbeaten at 47 runs off 51 balls, and took his team toward victory. 

Talking Points

Karnataka will have various learning curves entangled with their loss. No batter put their hand up to support Agarwal (249 in the 1st innings) and Jose (109 in the 2nd innings) with the bat.

Saurashtra, too, had their flaws, but they will be strengthened by the inclusion of Jaydev Unadkat, who has been released from the Test squad, to play Bengal at Eden Gardens in the final.

Brief Score:

Karnataka (1st Innings) - 407-10 (133.3 overs)
Mayank Agarwal - 249 (429), Srinivas Sharath - 66 (153)
Chetan Sakariya - 3/73 (29), Kushang Patel - 3/109 (26)

Saurashtra (1st Innings) - 527-10 (174.4 overs)
Arpit Vasavada - 202 (406), Sheldon Jackson - 160 (245)
Vidhwath Kaverappa - 5/83 (35.4), Shreyas Gopal - 2/113 (29)

Karnataka (2nd Innings) - 234/10 (58.2 overs)
Nikin Jose 109 (161), Mayank Agarwal 55 (64)
Chetan Sakariya - 4/45 (11), Dharmendrasinh Jadeja - 4/79 (23.2)

Saurashtra (2nd Innings) - 117-6 (34.2 overs)
Arpit Vasavada 47* (51), Chetan Sakariya - 24 (24)
Vasuki Koushik - 3/32 (10.2), Krishnappa Gowtham - 3/38 (15)

Result: Saurashtra won by 4 wickets.