Jaipur: Delhi and Gautam Gambhir's off-field worries transformed into on-field woes as they were skittled out for a paltry 138 in 47 overs against an inexperienced Rajasthan on the opening day of the Ranji Trophy group league match here yesterday.
Ashok Menaria, leading in the absence of an injured Pankaj Singh, won a good toss as seamer Deepak Chahar grabbed 5 for 60 in 15 overs to leave Delhi in tatters within 47 overs. Left-arm seamer Aniket Chaudhary took 3 for 26 in 13 overs as he ably complemented Chahar.
At stumps, the home team played cautiously to reach 74 for t hree in 34 overs with only 65 required to take first innings lead in a match that looks set to have an outright result. Delhi's miseries started as early as Unmukt Chand (4) was bowled by a swinging delivery from Chahar having hit a lone boundary.
First change bowler Manjeet Singh got rid off one drop batsman Vaibhav Rawal (8) caught by wicketkeeper Dishant Yagnik. Milind Kumar (6) was gone as Chahr got one to come in after pitching as Delhi were 49 for three. With coach Ajay Jadeja refusing to come due to presence of assistant coach Amit Bhandari, there was no seasoned
tactician in the dressing room, who would tell the boys what needs to be done.
Under pressure Gambhir also struggled for nearly an hour and 43 minutes as he played and missed a lot was finally gone for a painstaking 24 off 68 balls that had four boundaries. He was dismissed in a now familiar fashion of playing the ugly dab shot to a delivery from Chahar that was angling out as Yagnik made no mistake behind the stumps.
Debutant wicketkeeper Mohit Ahlawat (1) edged one from Aniket that held its line with the angle as Yagnik took his fourth catch. Manan Sharma (2)'s dismissal made it a sorry scorecard for Delhi as it read 56 for six in 26 overs. Sumit Narwal (25) and Pradeep Sangwan (18 no), then ensured that Delhi crossed the three-figure mark with a 48 run stand for the seventh wicket.
Narwal, who spanked five boundaries was holed in the deep off a delivery from debutant pacer Natthu Singh. Delhi were soon all-out for 138. Playing with a four-pronged pace attack on a helpful track, Vineet Saxena (4) and Abhimanyu Lamba (5) were dismissed cheaply by Narwal (2/15) as Rajasthan were 32 for two.
Pranay Sharma (42) hit seven fours as he added 38 for the third wicket before Pradeep Sangwan dismissed him. At close of play, Menaria (19 batting) was in company of
Puneet Yadav (2 batting).
Brief Scores: Delhi 1st Innings 138 in 47 overs (Gautam Gambhir 24, Sumit Narwal 25, Deepak Chahar 5/60, Aniket Chaudhary 3/26) Rajasthan 1st Innings: 74/3 (Pranay Sharma 42, Sumit Narwal 2/15).