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Ranji Trophy 2023-24, QF2 & QF3: TN knock out defending champions Saurashtra, to meet Mumbai in SF

Ranji Trophy 2023-24, Quarter-Final 2 & Quarter-Final 3: Tamil Nadu knock out defending champions Saurashtra, to meet Mumbai in Semi-finals.


Ranji Trophy 2023-24, Quarter-final, Mumbai vs Baroda_ Mumbai beat Baroda on 2nd innings lead  _ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©X_Twitter)
Ranji Trophy 2023-24: Musheer Khan scored hundred for Mumbai (Images: ©X/Twitter)

After seven quality and exciting rounds, the Ranji Trophy 2023-24 found its eight teams in the quarter-final round. Mumbai and Baroda faced each other in the second quarter-final of the tournament while defending champions Saurashtra and Tamil Nadu locked horns in the third quarter-final game.

 

Mizoram’s Agni Chopra is so far the leading run-getter of the competition with 939 runs in six games at an average of 78.25 and a strike rate of 103.30. In the bowling department, Hyderabad’s Tanay Thyagarajan is the top wicket-taker with 56 scalps in seven games at an average of 14.98.


A look at the second and third quarter-finals of Ranji Trophy 2023-24


TN vs SAU: TN knocked out defending champions Saurashtra to end 7-season wait for semis

Tamil Nadu qualified to this stage on the back of their four victories in seven games with two drawn results. Their only defeat of the season came against Gujarat by 111 runs in their opening clash of the season. Saurashtra, on the other hand, had the same fate while their only loss came against Haryana.

 

At the SNR College Cricket Ground in Coimbatore, Saurashtra won the toss and opted to bat first. Only wicket-keeper batter Harvik Desai stepped up with the bat thanks to his 83-run knock in the opening position. No one else could even cross the 40-run mark as the visitors were bundled out for 183 in their first innings. Tamil Nadu skipper Ravisrinivasan Sai Kishore returned with impressive figures of 5/66 in 32.1 overs. Sriram Ajith Ram also picked up three wickets including the ‘big fish’ Cheteshwar Pujara (2). 


Tamil Nadu didn’t have a great start as they lost opener Vimal Khumar (5) early. The 119-run fifth-wicket partnership between Baba Indrajith (80) and Boopathi Kumar (65) gave them the platform for a huge total. Sai Kishore again impressed with the bat for his 60-run knock at a crucial number three position. Tamil Nadu ended with 338 in their first innings and earned a lead of 155 runs. 


Saurashtra again displayed a flop show with the bat in their second innings. Pujara showed some fight with the bat for his 46-run knock, as no one else reached 30. At 103/4, they were batting decently and were expected to take a lead over the hosts. But suddenly, they lost their last seven wickets for just 19 runs and were blown away for 122. Sai Kishore ended with 4/27 in 26.4 overs, while Sandeep Warrier returned with 3/18. 


Tamil Nadu earned a huge victory of an innings and 33 runs and ended their wait for the semifinal spot after seven years. Washington Sundar is expected to take part in their semifinal clash. They are also awaiting the recovery status of Sai Sudharsan, who will have a fitness test at the NCA. 


Brief Scores: TN 338 (Indrajith 80, Boopathi 65, Jani 3/22) beat SAU 183 (Desai 83, Kishore 5/66) & 122 (Pujara 46, Kishore 4/27) by an innings and 33 runs. 


Player of the Match: R Sai Kishore (60 & 9/93) 



MUM vs BRD: Mumbai qualified for the semis after a narrow first-innings lead

In seven group games, the 41-time champions Mumbai have won five games and drew one fixture. Their only defeat of the edition came against Uttar Pradesh by two wickets. Baroda had just three victories and three drawn results in this tournament. Their only defeat of the season came against Madhya Pradesh by an innings and 52 runs.

 

On winning the toss at the Sharad Pawar Cricket Academy BKC in Mumbai, the hosts won the toss and decided to bat first. The second-highest run-getter of the recently finished U-19 World Cup 2024, Musheer Khan impressed with his unbeaten 203-run knock, decorated with 18 fours. Hardik Tamore managed 57 runs as Mumbai piled up 384 runs in their first innings. 


The 174-run third-wicket partnership between Shaswat Rawat (124) and captain Vishnu Solanki (136) gave Baroda a great platform as they found themselves at 239/3. But they collapsed suddenly and were bundled out for 348. Shams Mulani ended with 4/121 to gift the hosts an essential 36-run lead. 


Tamore (114) and Prithvi Shaw (87) recovered Mumbai to 212/4 with a 124-run fourth-wicket partnership. Ajinkya Rahane (0) continued his poor tournament as he now has just 115 runs in six games at an average of 12.77 with a best of 56*. Mumbai lost their next five wickets for just 125 runs and was struggling at 337/9. Then came the most frustrating period for Baroda. Tanush Kotian (120*) and Tushar Deshpande (123) brought up a 232-run stand for the last wicket to propel Mumbai to 569 in their second innings. 


Baroda could reach 121/3 in their second innings before both captains shook their hands. Mumbai earned the semifinal ticket thanks to their 36-run first innings lead. Soon, they received a boost with Shreyas Iyer’s availability being confirmed for their semifinal clash. 


Brief Scores: MUM 384 (Musheer 203*, Bhatt 7/112) & 569 (Deshpande 123, Kotian 120*, Bhatt 7/200) drew with BRD 348 (Solanki 136, Shashwat 124, Mulani 4/121) & 121/3 (Priyanshu 54, Kotian 2/16) and qualified to semis on first innings lead.

 

Player of the Match: Musheer Khan (203* & 33) 


Tamil Nadu will now face Mumbai in the second semifinal of the Ranji Trophy 2023-24 on March 02 at the BKC ground in Mumbai. 



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