Guj scores 304 for 4 against Saurashtra

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Rajkot, Nov 3 (UNI) Unbeaten fifth wicket partnership of 144 runs in 187 balls between Bhavik Thakkar (not out 73) and Sunny Patel (not out 90) helped Gujarat score 304 off four wickets on the opening day of the four-day Ranji Trophy super league match at the Madhav Rao Scindia Cricket ground here.

Saurashtra's captain Jaydev Shah opted to field after winning the toss on a batting track, as he wanted to take advantage of moisture in the initial hours.

Medium Pacer Sandeep Jobanputra gave an early breakthrough in the fifth over of the innings, when Priyank Panchal gave an edge to the wicketkeeper Sagar Jogiani, who did not make mistake and accepted the catch when Gujarat was at four.

Gujarat's captain Parthiv Patel joined Nilesh Modi and both played to added 77 runs for the second wicket before former was caught at square-leg by Ravindra Jadjea off medium pacer Sandeep Jobanputra. Parthiv Patel made 42 runs with the help of seven boundaries from 51 balls.

Few overs later, Nilesh Modi also made exit when he was caught by Sandeep Jobanputra off left arm spinner Rakesh Dhruve's second over, after scoring 42 runs in which he smashed four boundaries, when Gujarat's score was reading 123 for three.

Niraj Patel though looked settled in the crease did not capitalise for long innings and gave an edge to the wicketkeeper on the bowling of medium pacer J Odedara, after scoring 36 runs. At this stage, it seemed that Jaydev Shah's decision to field first was worthwhile, as Gujarat lost their four wickets at the score of 160 at Tea.

However, Bhavik Thakkar and Sunny Patel had a different idea and proved Jaydev Shah's decision wrong, as they scored at their will and added 144 runs without any further damage. Jaydev Shah used as many as seven bowlers, including himself to unsettle the duo, but failed to get desired result. Sunny Patel was playing more aggressively than his partner and scored unbeaten 90 runs in 89 balls in which he executed seventeen boundaries, while B Thakkar made unbeaten 73 from 147 balls. His innings was studded with seven fours and three huge sixes, all from left arm spinner Rakesh Dhruve.

Brief Score : Gujarat First Innings 304 for four in 90 overs ( Nilesh Modi 42, Parthiv Patel 42, Niraj Patel 36, Bhavik Thakkar not out 73, Sunny Patel not out 90, S Jobanputra two for 75, J Odedara one for 78 and R Dhruve one for 47).

UNI AV RN PK AS2129

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