Ambati Rayudu scored an unbeaten 52 to guide Hyderabad to a win away against Assam. © Getty Images

Ambati Rayudu scored an unbeaten 52 to guide Hyderabad to a win away against Assam. © Getty Images

Ambati Rayudu’s unbeaten half-century saved the day for Hyderabad as the visiting side made heavy weather of a modest chase before securing a four-wicket win over Assam in their Ranji Trophy 2017-18 Group A sixth-round game on Monday November 20).

The other game that continued to the fourth day ended in a draw, with Karnataka’s openers making merry against Uttar Pradesh. Karnataka might not have got a win, but they booked a spot in the quarterfinal along with Delhi, who beat Maharashtra on Sunday evening.

Assam v Hyderabad in Guwahati
Responding to Hyderabad’s first-innings 326, Assam were bowled out for 136 in their first innings, and went to stumps on the third day at 300 for 7, just 110 ahead, at Barsapara Cricket Stadium.

On the fourth morning, Assam could add only 31 runs to their overnight total, setting Hyderabad a modest 142-run target.

Hyderabad didn’t have the best of starts, and barring Rayudu, their middle order faltered in a seemingly straightforward chase. Hyderabad lost Tanmay Agarwal and P Akshath Reddy, the openers, inside three overs, and slipped to 69 for 5 by the 25th over as the Assam bowlers kept chipping away.

K Sumanth, the wicketkeeper-batsman, briefly steadied the innings with his 32 off 66 balls, but it was Rayudu’s unbeaten 52, and his 55-run sixth-wicket stand with Akash Bhandari (26) that took Hyderabad past the target to 144 for 6 in 39 overs.

Arup Das, the right-arm pacer, and Riyan Parag, the legspinner, finished with two wickets apiece for Assam.

With two wins, Hyderabad now have 15 points from five matches, while Assam, who are yet to secure a win, have just two points from as many games.

Points: Assam 0, Hyderabad 6

Delhi v Maharashtra in New Delhi

On Sunday, Rahul Tripathi’s century went in vain as Delhi’s bowlers knocked Maharashtra over inside three days to record a win by an innings and 61 runs.

Mayank Agarwal continued his rich vein of form, scoring an unbeaten 133 off 171 balls. © Getty Images

Mayank Agarwal continued his rich vein of form, scoring an unbeaten 133 off 171 balls. © Getty Images

Uttar Pradesh v Karnataka in Kanpur

The match ended in a draw, but Karnataka’s first-innings lead gave them three points as they reclaimed the top spot on the points table. UP, taking one point from the game, remained in the penultimate position with just three points from five matches.

Resuming at 201 for 5 on the final day, UP looked steady with Rinku Singh  stitching a 68-run stand for the fourth wicket with Updendra Yadav (49 not out).  But once K Gowtham, the offspinner, snared Rinku for 73, Shreyas Gopal, the legspinner, then prised out the tail as the hosts finished with 331 from 84 overs.

For Karnataka, Shreyas picked up three wickets, while Gowtham and Ronit More, the medium pacer, chipped in with two wickets apiece.

Despite conceding a 324-run lead, Karnataka did not enforce a follow-on, for the second time in a row, and the opening batsmen made the most of the opportunity by notching up unbeaten centuries. R Samarth (126 not out off 183 balls) and Mayank Agarwal (133 not out off 171 balls) forged a mammoth 259-run partnership as the visitors ended the day with 262 for no loss in 59 overs before the teams shook hands.

Points: Uttar Pradesh 1, Karnataka 3