Delhi on threshold of victory chasing a modest 105 target

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Chennai, Dec 27 (UNI) Leg Spinner Chaitanya Nanda bagged five wickets to put Delhi on the threshold of a win and a semi-final berth in their final Elite Group A Ranji Trophy championship superleague match against Tamil Nadu here today.

At the M A Chidambaram stadium, chasing a modest target of 105 to win, the visitors made ten for no loss in five overs at close on the third day of the four-day contest. Delhi now require 95 runs more on the final day tomorrow to romp home victorious.

Tamil Nadu managed to restrict Delhi's lead to 70 runs, but the home team batsmen came a cropper and were all out 174 runs in just 55.1 overs, with Chanda picking up five wickets for 47 runs.

Earlier, Delhi resuming at 265 for six, overhauled the home team's total of 268, before they were bowled out for 338 in 104 overs, securing a small first innings lead of 70 runs.

Lower order Batsmen Pradeep Sangwan (31) and Narender Singh (34) chipped in with useful contributions to ensure a good lead for Delhi. For Tamil Nadu, left arm spinner C Suresh claimed four wickets.

However, the 70-run lead virtually proved too big for the home team to bridge, as they collapsed like a pack of cards and were bowled out cheaply.

An 82-run seventh wicket stand between R Ramkumar (57) and H Gopinath (37), saved Tamil Nadu the embarrassment of losing the contest on the third day itself.

None of the top and middle order batsmen applied themselves to the task as left arm medium pacer Pradeep Sangwan, speedster Parvinder Avana and leggie Chaitanya Nanda struck in tandem to have the home team reeling at 61 for six, before Ramkumar and Gopinath steadied the innings.

Ramkumar who struck eight boundaries in his 46 ball-57 added 82 for the seventh wicket with H Gopinath (37, 88 balls, 6x4) in 18.3 overs. Once they were dismissed in a space of 13 balls, the rest of the innings folded up, with Nanda returning with five wickets for a match haul of eight for 112.

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