The opening day of the 2016-17 Ranji Trophy tournament saw the defending champions, Mumbai, begin their campaign in an emphatic fashion as they bowled Tamil Nadu out for 87 in the first innings, before they finished their proceedings placed at 85/4, thereby trailing their opponents by just 2 runs. Dhawal Kulkarni was the star with the ball for the defending champions, as he picked up a four-wicket-haul, while Tushar Deshpande, who was playing his first Ranji Trophy game also picked up four wickets.
None of the Tamil Nadu batsmen could consolidate on the starts that they got, as only three men in their batting lineup – Baba Aparajith, Baba Indrajith and Dinesh Karthik – could get to double figures.
In reply, Mumbai found themselves in a spot of bother, as they lost their first four wickets with just 53 runs on the board, with K Vignesh picking up 2/5 in 6 overs, but managed to pull themselves out of trouble through a 32-run stand between the captain Aditya Tare and Kaustubh Pawar.
Brief Scores: Mumbai 85/4 (Kaustubh Pawar 26, Aditya Tare 22, Vignesh 2/5) trail Tamil Nadu 87 (Baba Indrajith 28, Dinesh Karthik 15, Dhawal Kulkarni 4/31) by 2 runs.
In another Group A fixture, Baroda, batting first against Gujarat piled up an impressive total of 285/2 riding on Aditya Waghmode’s 103 and Deepak Hooda’s 76. Kedar Devdhar, the Baroda opening batsman also scored a half-century before being dismissed on 65.
Brief Scores: Baroda 285/2 (Waghmode 103, Hooda 76, Bumrah 1/25) vs Gujarat at Stumps on Day 1.
Railways put up a similar performance against a strong Punjab side – containing the likes of Yuvraj Singh, Siddharth Kaul, Sandeep Sharma and Mandeep Singh – and scored 257 runs for the loss of 5 wickets at Stumps on Day 1. Shivakant Shukla scored an unbeaten 117 for Railways, while Yuvraj Singh, the India middle-order batsman, picked up a wicket for Punjab.
Brief Scores: Railways 257/5 (Shukla 117*, Yadav 65, Kaul 2/53 ) vs Punjab at Stumps on Day 1.
In Group B, Varun Aaron’s four-wicket-haul helped Jharkhand bowl out Maharashtra for 210 before they themselves stuttered to 33/2 at Stumps on the first day. A Maharashtra side that was led by Kedar Jadhav, could not hold the fort against the fast-bowling trio of Aaron, Ajay and Ashish Kumar, who shared nine wickets amongst them to help their side gain an advantage early in the game.
However, the advantage was subdued to an extent when Jharkhand lost both their opening batsmen inside the first 8 overs and finished their day at 33/2, with Saurabh Tiwary and Virat Singh at the crease.
Brief Scores: Jharkhand 33/2 (Singh 10*, Tiwary 9*, Sanklecha 2/13) trail Maharashtra 210 (Bawane 78, Jadhav 59, Aaron 4/47) by 177 runs.
Saurashtra scored 269/5 against Team Rajasthan in their Ranji opener, courtesy a fine first-class hundred by the captain, Jaydev Shah, and a half-century by Sheldon Jackson (76). Aniket Choudhary picked up a couple of wickets for Rajasthan. Nathu Singh and Pankaj Singh picked up one wicket each.
Brief Scores: Saurashtra 269/5 (Jayadev Shah 120, Sheldon Jackson 76, Aniket Choudhary 2/25) vs Team Rajasthan at Stumps on Day 1.
In Group C, Ranji debutants Chattisgarh under the leadership of India middle-order batsman Mohammad Kaif, got their campaign off to a good start as they bowled Tripura out for 118 and reduced the deficit to 41 runs by scoring 77 for the loss of three wickets at Stumps on Day 1.
AJ Mandal picked up 3 wickets for Chattisgarh, while Abhuday Kant Singh, PR Sinha and SS Ruikar picked up two wickets each. Kaif was batting on 3, while Ashutosh Singh was on 31 when the play was called off.
Brief Scores: Chattisgarh 77/3 (Ashutosh Singh 31*, Rishabh Tiwari 31, Rana Dutta 2/9) trail Tripura 118 (AA Dey 32, Yashpal Singh 26, Mandal 3/41) by 41 runs.
Group A: Madhya Pradesh 292/7 (Harpreet Singh Bhatia 112, Devendra Bundela 52, Ankit Rajpoot 2/53, Piyush Chawla 2/64) vs Uttar Pradesh at Stumps on Day 1.
Group B: Odisha 134/6 (Biplab Samantaray 53, Sandeep Pattnaik 31, SB Wagh 2/13) vs Vidarbha at Stumps on Day 1.
Assam 132/6 (Rahul Hazarika 37, Tarjinder Singh 31, Navdeep Saini 2/31, Manan Sharma 2/34) vs Delhi at Stumps on Day 1.
Group C: Kerala 263/7 (Sanju Samson 129, Jalaj Sexena 69, Samiullah Begh 4/68, Ram Dayal 2/59) vs Jammu and Kashmir at Stumps on Day 1.
Himachal 318 (PS Chopra 117, SL Verma 116*, Siva Kumar 2/51, Stephen 2/56) vs Andhra at Stumps on Day 1.
Hyderabad 28/1 (Akshath Reddy 18*, Vishal Sharma 0*) trail Goa 164 (SS Bandekar 59, Snehal Kauthankar 38, Md Siraj 4/14) by 136 runs.
Services 143/6 (Aanshul Gupta 69, Nakul Verma 25, Rajat Paliwal 2/11) vs Haryana at Stumps on Day 1.