Dhawan leads North’s Charge with ton
By Ashok Venugopal / ENS - CHENNAI
07th October 2012 10:37 AM
Skipper Shikhar Dhawan’s 101 (179b, 15x4) steered North Zone to a comfortable 251 for 3 against West Zone at stumps on the first day of the quarterfinals in the Duleep Trophy on Saturday. After a sedate start, Dhawan was at his aggressive best. He got good support from Rahul Dewan, who made 65. The duo played with a lot of patience initially to keep wickets intact. As the match progressed, Dhawan and Dewan scored quickly to raise 164 for the first wicket.
Dhawan put his experience to good effect by playing the seamers Samad Fallah and Murtuja Vahora patiently and attacking the spinners Harmeet Singh and Kamlesh Makvana.
When tested by the left-right combination of Fallah and Vahora with the new ball, Shikhar and Rahul negated their efforts with good footwork.
Harmeet Singh on whom West depended to give breakthroughs disappointed. It looked like Harmeet was still in 50-50 mode as he was bowling flat. Perhaps he was trying to trap his opponents leg before but did not have any luck. Had he flighted the ball more, bowled a better length, and spun the ball either way of the wicket, he could have got some purchase. This is where offie Makwana excelled. He not only flighted the ball better but deceived the batsmen by moving the ball away from them. After reaching his century, Dhawan was out just before tea. A sudden rush of blood saw Dhawan stepping out to drive Kamlesh. However, he missed the line of the ball which was moving away from him as Parthiv Patel effected the stumping with ease.
Dewan played against the spin and edged to Ajinkya Rahane in the slips giving Kamlesh his second wicket.
Abhishek Nayar was impressive among West seamers. He had good carry and also bowled a lively pace. He is the one West will look forward to on Sunday to make further inroads, as the first hour in the morning will help seamers. After the openers left, Sunny Singh (46) and Nitin Saini (37 batting) forged a good partnership and scored boundaries with effortless ease. When the duo threatened to put up a big stand they were done in by the second new ball. In the penultimate over of the day, Sunny Singh was deceived by a peach of a delivery from Fallah and was caught behind by Parthiv Patel.
North Zone (1st innings): Dewan c Rahane b Makvana 65, Dhawan st Parthiv b Makwana 101, Sunny c Parthiv b Fallah 46, Saini (batting) 37, Extras (lb-1, nb-1) 2. Total (3 wkts, 89.2 overs) 251. Fall of wickets: 1-164, 2-175, 3-25. Bowling: Fallah 17.2–4–39-1, Vahora 15–6–30-0, Harmeet 18–2–75–0, Nayar 13–3–32–0, Makvana 22–4–60–2, Pawar 3–0-11–0, Jadhav 1–0–3–0.
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