Nath puts UP in command with second first-class ton
New Delhi, Nov 3 (PTI) Akshdeep Nath struck his second first-class hundred, a rather timely one, to put Uttar Pradesh in a strong position after they took a slender first innings lead against Delhi on day three of the Ranji Trophy Group A here today.
During the fag end of the day, there was a security breach at the ground as a man in an allegedly inebriated state, drove onto the pitch before being detained by the security personnel.
In the match, in response to UP's 291, Delhi could only get to 269 after resuming the day at 228 for six with overnight batsman Dhruv Shorey running out of the partner to miss out on a deserving hundred by two runs.
In the second innings, Delhi had UP on the mat at 21 for four before Nath (batting 110) and Rinku Singh (64) forged a potentially match-winning stand of 108 runs to steer to their team to 224 for seven at stumps on day three, leading the oppostion by 246 runs.
UP, who have had a poor start to the season, have a good chance of winning the game going into the fourth and final, considering anything close to 300 will be a daunting target on a deteriorating surface.
Nath, who scored a valuable 59 in the first innings, was the undisputed star of the day after UP both their openers Shivam Chaudhary and Almas Shaukat fell without scoring.
To add to their woes, first innings saviour Mohammad Saif too departed quickly after Delhi captain Ishant Sharma had him caught in the slip cordon for his second wicket.
Ishant had bowled Chaudhary on the first ball of the innings while Navdeep Saini sent back Shaukat, leaving UP in deep trouble at two runs for three wickets. Nath remained unbeaten in his 175-ball stay that included 14 fours and a six.
Captain Suresh Raina (16) was out cheaply again, making it 21 for four and it seemed his team had a reached a point of no return in the game.
But UP fought back valiantly through Nath and Singh before the century maker shared an 86-run stand with Upendra Yadav (30) to push the total beyond 200.
Delhi let UP off the hook and paid the price.
In Delhi: UP 291 and 224/7 in 63 overs (Akshdeep Nath batting 110, Rinku Singh 64; Ishant Sharma 3/38). Delhi 269 in 87 overs (Dhruv Shorey 98; Saurabh Kumar 4/87).
In Pune: Maharashtra 245 and 135/4 (Ruturaj Gaikwad 61, Abhimanyu Mithun 2/32). Karnataka 628/5 (Mayank Agarwal 304 no)
In Delhi: Hyderabad 474/9 decl. Railways 246 & 13/0