Chasing 474 runs to win, India Green were 98 for two at Stumps on Day 3 of their Duleep Trophy match against India Red in Lucknow. After Priyank Panchal (133*) and Dinesh Karthik (100*) set India Green a massive target, Karn Sharma claimed M Vijay and P Chopra early in the innings and put India Red in a commanding position.
After India Green were left reeling at 37 for two by the leg-spinner, Karun Nair (36* off 55) joined forces with opener Samarth R (46* off 109) to stabilize the innings. The duo saw the team through to the end of day’s play in an unbroken 61-run partnership.
Gahlaut too posted a determined half-century as he partnered with Panchal to lay the foundation for a solid total. The pair had stitched a 114-run stand when Vijay had the No 3 batsman stumped to end the partnership. The experienced campaigner, who claimed his fifth wicket of the game and was the only bowler to get wickets for India Green in the innings.
Panchal then found an able partner in Dinesh Karthik and duo continued to glean runs off the opposition. Having come together in the first session, they continued to add to the tally in the second and took the team to Dinner at 285 for two. The wicketkeeper-batsman, who was 19 runs short of the three-figure mark when play resumed for the final session soon brought up his century and declared the innings at 307 for two.
The unbroken 181-run partnership for the third wicket between Panchal and Karthik has given India Red a chance to get an outright win. The balance was further tipped in the team’s favour as Karn once again caused early damage to the India Green line-up by picking vital wickets.
While India Red need to pick eight wickets on the final day of the match, India Green need 376 runs to win.
End of Day 1: India Red 1st inn 232/5 in 86 overs (P Panchal 105, D Karthik 15*, Gowtham K 10*, M Vijay 2/15, K Nair 2/17)
End of Day 2: India Red 1st inn 323/10 in 110.5 overs (D Karthik 50, M Vijay 3/46, Md Siraj 2/43); India Green 1st inn 157/10 in 49.5 overs (P Chopra 65, Gowtham K 5/46, K Sharma 4/39); India Red 2nd inn 19/1 in 13 overs (P Panchal 11*, R Gahlaut 1*) Lead by 185 runs
End of Day 3: India Red 2nd inn 307/2 in 75 overs (P Panchal 133*, D Karthik 100*, M Vijay 2/41); India Green 2nd inn 98/2 in 30 overs (Samarth R 46*, K Nair 36*, K Sharma 2/34) Need 376 runs to win