Cricket

Ranji Trophy 2024: Historic Tanush Kotian, Tushar Deshpande Centuries Help Mumbai Outbat Baroda And Enter Semi-Final

Tanush Kotian and Tushar Deshpande fell just one run short of equalling the record for the highest partnership for the 10th wicket in Ranji Trophy history, held by the pair of Ajay Sharma and Maninder Singh

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-PTI
Mumbai's Tanush Kotian and Tushar Deshpande became the first pair to score centuries at No. 10 and 11 in the history of the Ranji Trophy during their quarter-final against Baroda in Mumbai on February 27, 2024. Photo: -PTI
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Mumbai's Tanush Kotian and Tushar Deshpande on Tuesday scripted history by becoming the first pair since 1946 to hit hundreds at number 10 and 11, consigning their team's qualification to the semifinal of the Ranji Trophy to a mere footnote in Mumbai. (More Cricket News)

Mumbai entered the last-four stage of the premier domestic tournament on the basis of taking the first-innings lead against Baroda.

Representing the touring Indians against Surrey at The Oval 78 years ago, the duo of CT Sarwate (124*) and SN Banerjee (121) first achieved the incredible feat while putting on 249 runs for the 10th wicket as Nos 10 and 11 batters.

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Kotian remained unbeaten on 120 from 129 balls with 10 fours and four sixes while Deshpande fell for 123 from 129 balls with 10 fours and eight sixes, putting on a staggering 232 runs for the 10th wicket.

While they entered the record books doing wonders as Nos 10 and 11, Kotian and Deshpande fell just one run short of equalling the record for the highest partnership for the 10th wicket in Ranji Trophy history, which is held by the pair of Ajay Sharma and Maninder Singh.

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Mumbai will take on Tamil Nadu in the second semifinal at the same venue while in the first semifinal game, Vidarbha will host Madhya Pradesh.

Their stunning partnership out-batted Baroda from the quarterfinal, who were set an improbable 606-run target to get in about two sessions on the final day.

The match ended in a draw after tea with Baroda reaching 121/3 in the second innings with left-arm spinner Kotian taking two wickets and Priyanshu Moliya hitting 54.

Mumbai had taken a lead of 36 runs in the first innings after Baroda were bowled out for 348 in reply to the hosts' 384.

Meanwhile, the India U-19 World Cup star Musheer Khan was adjudged the player of the match for his unbeaten 203 in the first innings.

A thrilling final day was on cards when Mumbai resumed play at 379 for nine with Kotian unbeaten on 32 and Deshpande batting on 23.

Having come together in the middle with Mumbai leading by 373 overall, the pair went about its job with ease to pile up further misery on the Baroda side.

Kotian and Deshpande recorded their maiden first-class hundreds while adding 232 runs for the last wicket, which came off only 240 balls.

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"We wanted to bat till the drinks break of the first session at least, but at the same time, we also had the aim of capitalising on every loose delivery that we got along the way," Kotian told PTI after the feat.

The pair collectively hammered 12 sixes during their partnership which helped Mumbai out-bat Baroda from the contest.

Brief scores: Mumbai 384 & 569 in 132 overs (Hardik Tamore 114, Prithvi Shaw 87, Shams Mulani 54, Tanush Kotian 120*, Tushar Deshpande 123; Bhargav Bhatt 7/200) drew with Baroda 348 & 121/3 in 30 overs (Priyanshu Moliya 54; Tanush Kotian 2/16).

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