Nervous Khadiwale clears 90s hurdle, hosts cross Baroda total
- Trouble mounts for Sreesanth as Mumbai cops gather more evidence
- SIT to seek Supreme Court guidance on Maya Kodnani death penalty issue
- Tamil Nadu police bans Yasin Malik-linked pro-Eelam public meeting
- Kings XI Punjab end IPL 2013 campaign with a win
- Narendra Modi: India losing sheen as agricultural nation
Harshad Khadiwale's mind started playing tricks once he reached the 90s. Twice before this season, the Maharashtra batsman had been affected by the pressure of an approaching hundred. But this time, he didn't. The 24-year-old hit a cracking on-drive on reaching 90, followed the flowing stroke with three singles and, finally, came up a wristy flick for 'three' to bring up his 8th first-class ton. After the game Khadiwale was to say he wanted to spring to his hundred. "I had to knock off the runs as quickly as possible. The last two times I was stuck in the 90s for too long and lost my way," he said.
After crossing the 100-barrier, Khadiwale played more freely to eventually finish at168. The big hundred went a long way in Maharashtra getting the all-important first innings lead. Replying to Baroda's score of 362, the hosts finished at 376/7, a position of distinct advantage with a day to spare.
So Khadiwale got over his nervous 90s but skipper Rohit Motwani didn't. Motwani was out at 91, a contribution that saw him stitch 166 runs with Khadiwale and help Maharashtra inch ahead of the visitors.
This close chase had its share of drama. Maharashtra were 306/5 when Khadiwale got out and 359/7 when Motwani walked to the pavilion. Baroda was in striking distance but the frequent fall of wickets had making things difficult for Maharashtra. When trailing by 11 runs, Baroda saw a window of opportunity. They choked up the run-flow for about seven overs as the hosts struggled to reach the 362. However, Shrikant Mundhe powered one through the on-side which helped release the pressure and Maharashtra soon took the lead.
Motwani, able foil
The morning started with overnight batsman Ankeet Bawne perishing in the first over, edging Gagandeep Singh to Pinal Shah behind the stumps. Motwani joined Khadiwale at the wicket and the two built up a partnership which put Maharashtra in a commanding position. Khadiwale carried on from where he left off on Day 2 as he drove confidently and used his wrists to execute fine flicks behind square. Khadiwale brought up his hundred after the first hour of the day and after that the two batsmen consolidated. Motwani was content to knock the ball around for singles. This resulted in the Baroda fielding becoming slacker.
- Destitute, orphan students outclass rest in Andhra Class 10 exams
- To re-energise ties, PM wants to visit US, waits for confirmation
- NIA court says no terror link, frees 'Hizbul militant' Liyaqat on bail
- CBI arrests its coal allotments investigator on bribery charge
- ‘Cricketer-bookie Amit may have used Jiju to reach Sree’
- BCCI chief N Srinivasan says police must prove spot-fixing allegations