For all those who were present for this duel, the key point of interest was the performances of out-of-favour India openers Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir and Mumbai skipper Zaheer Khan. Nevertheless, the Delhi duo did not get a chance to showcase their skills as Mumbai batted first after winning the toss.
The hosts closed proceedings at 252-6, thanks largely to the efforts of opener Aditya Tare (53 runs, 6x4), Wasim Jaffer (61 runs, 12x4, 1x6) and the young batsman Siddhesh Lad (74 runs, 9x4). Nevertheless the defending champions would be disappointed that neither of the trio went on to compile bigger scores.
Mumbai lost opener Kaustabh Powar (8) to Ashish Nehra with only 10 runs on the board. The second wicket partnership between Tare and the ever-reliable Jaffer yielded 94 runs before the latter got out, having mistimed a pull off Parwinder Awana. He was caught by substitute fielder Milind Kumar.
The day however belonged to Lad. Playing only his second Ranji trophy match, he scored his maiden first class fifty. He was well supported by Tare who scored a patient 52.
It was Delhi’s disciplined bowling led by Ashish Nehra that resulted in the hosts losing their plot in the final session of the day as all-rounder Abhishek Nayar (12) and Suryakumar Yadav (20) fell cheaply. Nehra and Awana were the pick of the bowlers claiming 2-16 and 2-52 respectively.
Mumbai 252-6 in 88 overs (Siddhesh Lad 74, Wasim Jaffer 61, Aditya Tare 53; Ashish Nehra 2-16) vs Delhi