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  5. Mumbai win Ranji Trophy for record-extending 42nd time, beat gritty Vidarbha in final

Mumbai win Ranji Trophy for record-extending 42nd time, beat gritty Vidarbha in final

After conceding the first innings lead, Vidarbha were always chasing the game but they put on a brilliant dogged show in the fourth innings taking the game into the final day. Even though they never threatened to gun down 538, Mumbai players seemed frustrated at one point only to seal the game soon.

Written By: Aditya Kukalyekar @adikukalyekar New Delhi Updated on: March 14, 2024 13:41 IST
Ranji Trophy 2024
Image Source : PTI Mumbai team

Mumbai have defeated Vidarbha to win the Ranji Trophy for 42nd time in history. It was only a matter of time for them to seal the title clash after setting the target of 538 for the opposition late on the third day. But credit to Vidarbha batters for taking the game into the final day when even at lunch, unthinkable seemed possible with their skipper Akshay Wadkar looking solid in the middle. However, things unravelled soon in the second sesson as they lost their last five wickets for just 15 runs.

When the play began on the final day, Vidarbha still needed 298 runs to win and had five wickets in hand. It seemed only a matter of time before they crumbled but the overnight unbeaten batters Akshay Wadkar and Harsh Dubey did well to keep Mumbai bowlers at bay in the first session. The wicketless session saw both the batters being cautious while also churning out runs whenever possible. The due to added 93 runs in the first couple of hours of play and at lunch, they needed 205 runs to win.

There were moments when Mumbai players were frustrated as well as Musheer Khan exchanged words with the Vidarbha skipper Wadkar on multiple occasions. The latter also got to his well deserved century soon after lunch. Just when many started thinking of the possibility of a miracle, Tanush Kotian broke the dogged partnership pinning Wadkar in front of the stumps.

The wicket was enough to trigger a collapse as Vidarbha were bundled out in five overs adding only 15 runs going down by 169 runs in the end. Fittingly, Dhawal Kulkarni, playing the last game of his career, picked up the last wicket castling Umesh Yadav and sealing Mumbai's 42nd Ranji Trophy win in history.

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