Bangalore, Sep 21: Robin Bist hit his seventh first-class century and remained unbeaten on 117 but Umesh Yadav's five-wicket haul restricted Rajasthan to 253 all out in 86.3 overs on the opening day of the Irani Cup on Friday. At stumps, Rest of India (ROI) were 2/0 in 1 over.
After ROI had won the opening session of play, Bist rescued Rajasthan with a fighting ton. However, in the final session of play, Umesh ran through the lower order to take 5/55 in 20 overs. Bist remained 117 not out off 187 balls and was at the crease for 262 minutes. Umesh completed 100 wickets in first-class cricket today in 29th match.
Brief Scores: Rajasthan 253 all out in 86.3 overs (Robin Bist 117 not out, Dishant Yagnik 40, Ankit Lamba 29, Umesh Yadav 5/55, Ishant Sharma 2/17, Stuart Binny 2/38) Vs Rest of India 2/0 in 1 over (Ajinkya Rahane 2 batting, Murali Vijay 0 batting)
Bist saved Rajasthan with a fine half century and at the tea interval had taken his team to 184/4 in 66 overs against Rest of India (ROI).
The righ-handed Bist, who scored more than 1,000 runs in the last season of Ranji Trophy and topped the batting charts, was batting on 84 at tea. Wicketkeeper Dishant Yagnik was the other unbeaten batsman, on 16.
Bist and RR Parida put on 105 runs for the fourth wicket as Rajasthan enjoyed a good session between lunch and tea. They had started the second session at 81/3. In this session, Rajasthan scored 103 runs in 32 overs losing one wicket, Parida, who was bowled by Ishant Sharma.
Left-arm spinner Harmeet Singh, who impressed in India's Under-19 World Cup victory, failed to take a wicket. He was introduced in the first over after lunch.
Lunch Report: Rajasthan 81/3 in 34 overs
Fast bowlers put Rest of India (ROI) on top against Rajasthan. At lunch, Rajasthan were reduced to 81/3 in 34 overs. Stuart Binny took two wickets while Ishant Sharma had one. RR Parida (13) and Robin Bist (21) are the not out batsmen.
ROI captain Cheteshwar Pujara's decision to bowl first was justified by his seamers. A greenish pitch had good bounce and Rajasthan batsmen were on the defensive right from the start.
Ishant and Umesh Yadav opened the bowling. Ishant bowled consistently with good pace. Yadav was the impressive between the two. Yadav began the match with five successive maidens. However he was not rewarded with a wicket. His first spell read 6-5-6-0.
Ishant gave ROI the first breakthrough when he had Vineet Saxena (0) caught behind by wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha with score on 13 in 4.1 overs. After Ishant's first burst of six overs (6-4-9-1), Binny came in his place from the pavilion end.
The right-hand paceman was welcomed to the bowling crease with a boundary from Ankit Lamba. Binny struck in his fifth over, trapping skipper Hrishikesh Kanitkar (8) LBW. Binny then dismissed Lamba (29) caught by Ajinkya Rahane at gully to leave Rajasthan at 46/3 in 24.1 overs.
Toss Report: Rest of India win toss, invite Rajasthan to bat
Rest of India captain Cheteshwar Pujara won the toss and elected to field first against Rajasthan.
The pitch had a greenish tinge to it and that prompted Pujara to bowl first. The recent Test between India and New Zealand had a sporting wicket and for this game too we might see an even contest between bat and ball.
Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma will be looking get early breakthroughs against the Ranji Trophy champions. Ishant is playing a first-class game after eight months. He underwent ankle surgery in March and his previous first-class game was a Test for India in Australia in January. The tall paceman missed Indian Premier League (IPL) this year.
India Under-19 World Cup winning left-arm spinner Harmeet Singh has been included in the Rest of India playing XI. It is a big occasion for the youngster. Homeboy Stuart Binny is also playing. There was no place for Yusuf Pathan, Parvinder Awana, Shikhar Dhawan and Abhimanyu Mithun.
The 20-year-old Harmeet has so far played only three first-class games for Mumbai. He had come in for huge praise after his Under-19 World Cup bowling. This will be a big test for him.
Indian domestic season's opener, Irani Cup (previously called Irani Trophy) is in its 50th edition. This provides a chance for youngsters to make an early impression to push themselves for India selection.
Rest of India: Cheteshwar Pujara (captain), Murali Vijay, Ajinkya Rahane, Subramaniam Badrinath, Dinesh Karthik, Wriddhiman Saha (wicketkeeper), Pragyan Ojha, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Stuart Binny, Harmeet Singh. Coach/Manager: Surendra Bhave.
Rajasthan: Hrishikesh Kanitkar (captain), Dishant Yagnik (wicketkeeper), Aniket Choudhary, Ankit Lamba, Vineet Saxena (vice captain), Sumeet Mathur, Gajendra Singh, Madhur Khatri, Deepak Chahar, Robin Bist, Rashmi Ranjan Parida. Coach: Chandrakant Pandit. Bowling Coach: Meyrick Pringle.
Umpires: S Ravi and Sudhir Asnani
Third umpire: Vineet Kulkarni
Match Referee: Manu Nayar