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Ranji Trophy 2022-23, Round 7: Uttarakhand, Andhra, Jharkhand and Punjab make it to QF stage

Updated: Jan 29

Ranji Trophy 2022-23, Round 7: Ajith Ram’s 9-93, Prasad Pawar’s 145 top returns; Uttarakhand, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand and Punjab qualify for Quarter-finals. Top four games from Ranji Trophy 2022-23 round seven.

Ranji Trophy 2022-23, Round 7: Hanuma Vihari played a crucial 80-run innings against Assam that helps Andhra qualify for quarter-finals | Walking Wicket (Images: ©andhraca/Twitter)
Vihari played a crucial 80-run innings against Assam (Images: ©andhraca/Twitter)

The final round games of Ranji Trophy 2022-23 concluded on Friday, and we now have the eight quarter finalists for this edition of India’s premier red-ball tournament. The prestigious tournament which began on December 13, 2022, is nearing its climax with these 8 teams vying for glory on who will be India’s best red-ball team.

Traditional powerhouses like defending champions Madhya Pradesh along with Karnataka, Saurashtra, Bengal and Punjab have qualified for the QFs. Teams like Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh and Uttarakhand who have played some excellent cricket also join the big guns.

One of the most surprising miss outs from this year’s Ranji Trophy quarter final line up have been 41-time champions and last year’s runner-up Mumbai who failed to cross the group stage. They will bow out of the tournament along with the likes of Maharashtra, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Vidarbha, Delhi and Rajasthan among other teams.

Group B proved to be a group of death and within a matter of few points, both Mumbai and Maharashtra were eliminated. Mumbai required a win and for Maharashtra a mere first innings lead would have been enough to progress to the next round. But it was not the case as Saurashtra and Andhra Pradesh made it through to the next stage from the given group.

Dhruv Shorey of Delhi continues to lead the batting charts having scored 859 runs with 3 centuries at an average of 95.44, while Kerala’s Jalaj Saxena sits pretty at the top in the bowling department having taken 50 wickets from 7 games at an average of 19.26 with six 5-fers. Unfortunately, both these teams will no longer contest in the tournament.

Read More: Ranji 2022-23, R6: Sarwate’s 11-81, Akash Deep’s 10-112 top returns; Bengal, MP, Kar, Sau reach QF

Let’s scan the top five games from Round 7 of Ranji Trophy 2022-23 which produced several incredible shows from both batters and bowlers.

Mumbai vs Maharashtra at the Cricket Club of India in Mumbai

Brief Scores: Maharashtra 384 (Kedar Jadhav 128, Ashay Palkar 66*, Mohit Avasthi 5/89) & 252 (Azim Kazi 75, Mulani 4/81) drew with Mumbai 384 (Prasad Pawar 145, Tanush Kotian 93, Dadhe 3/80) & 195/6 (Saxena 62, Veer 2/26)

Player of the Match: Prasad Pawar (145 & 5 catches)

Probably the most thrilling game in this round of Ranji Trophy 2022-23 where the first innings ended in a tie between the sides. Both Maharashtra and Mumbai scored exactly 384 in their first essay with Kedar Jadhav scoring a ton for the former, while Mumbai’s wicketkeeper-batter Prasad Pawar’s 145 and all-rounder Tanush Kotian’s 93 saved the team from conceding the first innings lead.

Mumbai went for the target of 253 set by their neighbours as they scored 195/6 in just 27.3 overs. The match ended as a rare first innings tie and subsequently as a draw. More importantly, on lagging behind Saurashtra and Andhra Pradesh in the group rankings, Maharashtra who ended with 25 points and Mumbai who ended with 24 points both failed to move to the next round.

Read More: Ranji Trophy 2022-23: Saxena’s 11-wicket haul, Shaw’s 379 among top returns in 5th round games

Tamil Nadu vs Saurashtra at MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chepauk, Chennai

Brief Scores: Tamil Nadu 324 (Baba Indrajith 66, Vijay Shankar 53, Dodiya 4/72) & 133 (Sudharsan 38, Jadeja 7/53) beat Saurashtra 192 (Jani 49, Ajith Ram 3/39, Siddharth 3/44) & 206 (Harvik Desai 101, Ajith Ram 6/54) by 59 runs

Player of the Match: Ajith Ram (3/39 & 6/54)

Saurashtra sans their stalwarts, Cheteshwar Pujara and Jaydev Undakat, took on hosts Tamil Nadu in Chennai. Being table-toppers going into the game, Saurashtra needed a win or draw to be sure of a quarter-final spot but suffered a surprise loss against the spirited TN side. This match was much talked about because of the return of Ravindra Jadeja after a considerable gap and he led his domestic side.

Opting to bat first, TN made 324 runs with almost all of their middle order batters getting a start on a turning surface at Chepauk. Former skipper Baba Indrajith top-scored with 66 while Vijay Shankar followed his three consecutive tons with a half-century. The hosts then restricted Saurashtra side to 192, thanks to three-fers from left-arm spinners Manimaran Siddharth and Ajith Ram. Despite a seven-wicket haul from India’s premier all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja to bundle out TN for 133 in the second innings and Saurashtra keeper-batter Harvik Desai’s brilliant fourth innings ton, Saurashtra lost to TN by 59 runs.

Even with the loss and being level on points with Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh, thanks to a positive head-to-head outcome with AP, Saurashtra made it to the last eight.

Read More: Ranji 2022-23: Unadkat’s 1st over hat-trick, Baltej’s 11-wicket haul top returns in 4th round games

Puducherry vs Kerala at Cricket Association Puducherry Siechem Ground

Brief Scores: Puducherry 371 (Paras Dogra 159, Arun Karthik 85, Jalaj Saxena 5/75) & 279/5 (Jay Pande 102, Krishna Pandey 94, Vishweshwar 3/58) drew with Kerala 286 (Chandran 70, Udeshi 5/62)

Player of the Match: Sagar Udeshi (5/62)

Kerala needed a win in their final game to stay alive in the tournament, while it was an inconsequential game for Puducherry. In what was a slow-moving game, veterans Paras Dogra and Arun Karthik’s contributions gave the much-needed boost to the Puducherry in their first innings as they scored 371 runs with another seasoned campaigner Jalaj Saxena picking his sixth 5-wicket haul of this season.

Kerala’s reply was also slow as they took 113 overs to make 286 runs with middle-order batter Akshay Chandran making 70 runs and the player of the match Sagar Udeshi picking his 15th fifer in first-class cricket. Eventually the game ended in a dull draw as Puducherry amassed 279/5 in their second essay with Jay Pande scoring his second first-class ton.

Both teams don’t go to the next round but the major highlight of the match was the spinner Jalaj Saxena breaching the 50-wicket mark in this Ranji season.

Read More: Ranji Trophy 2022-23: Mumbai, Vidarbha, MP, Delhi, TN top contenders for coveted silverware

Jharkhand vs Karnataka at Keenan Stadium in Jamshedpur

Brief Scores: Karnataka 300 (Devdutt Padikkal 114, Sharath 60, Shahbaz Nadeem 5/141) & 66/1 (Nikin Jose 42*) beat Jharkhand 164 (Kushagra 37, Gowtham 4/61, Shreyas Gopal 3/18) & 201 (Chakroborty 48, Gowtham 5/75, Koushik 3/21) by 9 wickets

Player of the Match: Devdutt Padikkal (114)

Karnataka continued their dominating run in Ranji Trophy 2022-23 by winning their fourth game of the season and finishing the league stage without any defeat. This was largely possible due to splendid individual performances by their star opening batter Devdutt Padikkal who scored a century in the first innings, the India off-spinner Krishnappa Gowtham’s 9-wicket haul in the match (4/61 & 5/75) and Shreyas Gopal’s contribution with the ball.

Jharkhand got bundled out for only 164 in their first innings, and a splendid century by Padikkal for Karnataka took the game completely away from the Virat Singh-led side. Jharkhand weren’t any better in the second innings as well as the Karnataka tweaker Gowtham took a fifer to bowl out Jharkhand for 201.

Ravikumar Samarth and Nikin Jose finished things off for Karnataka as they chased down the 66-run target and won yet another game this season.

Despite the loss, Jharkhand progressed to the last eight thanks to their brilliant showing in the earlier games and some other results going their way.

Read More: Ranji Trophy 2022-23: Prithvi Shaw’s career-best 383-ball 379 for Mumbai helps him reclaim India cap

Andhra Pradesh vs Assam at Dr PVG Raju ACA Sports Complex in Vizianagaram

Brief Scores: Andhra Pradesh 361 (Karan Shinde 90, Hanuma Vihari 80, Swarupam Purkayastha 4/48) beat Assam 113 (Rishav Das 30, Madhav Rayudu 4/12, Sasikanth 3/34) & 153 (Kunal Saikia 36, Lalith Mohan 5/40) by an innings and 95 runs

Player of the Match: M Madhav Rayudu (4/12 & 2/34)

Andhra Pradesh have been on a roll this season with stunning victories against a strong Saurashtra side in their last game. This after registering a close win against TN by 8 runs, followed by a ruthless win over Hyderabad.

Before going into this game, Andhra Pradesh needed a win and a bit of luck from the Mumbai vs Maharashtra game to go their way for them to reach the next stage. This is what happened as Andhra Pradesh completed a win by an innings and 95 runs over a weak Assam side and the Mumbai-Maharashtra game ended in a draw with a first innings tie. This made sure Andhra progressed to the quarter final stage.

Assam managed only 113 runs in their first innings with M Madhav Rayudu taking 4/12. Karan Shinde’s 90 and skipper Hanuma Vihari’s 80 propelled Andhra to a massive 361, in the process, gaining a 248-run first innings lead. Assam’s second innings was no different as they got bowled out for a mere 153 runs thanks to a fifer by Lalith Mohan.