Baroda rocked early but come back strong

Baroda weathered an early storm and ended the first day in a position of strength against Maharashtra. The away side were in trouble as early as in the third over as Shreekant Mundhe got an out-swinger to climb. Anupam Gupta tried to stab at the ball but ended up getting a nick to the keeper.

Saurabh Wakaskar was joined at the wicket by Abhimanyu Chauhan and the pair laboured on till the ninth over, adding 11 runs before Mundhe nipped one in and trapped Chauhan leg before, with the bat caught behind the batsman's pad. Baroda were two down for 14 and Maharashtra's decision to bowl first looked justified at that point.

Wakaskar's instructions to Aditya Waghmode as he joined him must have been not to fish at deliveries outside the off-stump. The 23-year-old shouldered arms to 12 balls before punching a Samad Fallah delivery through mid-on to open his account. Wakaskar and Waghmode then blunted the Maharashtra bowling for 15 overs as Baroda went to lunch at 80 for two.

Wakaskar fell immediately after lunch for an even 50 as he tried an expansive drive off Akshay Darekar which took the outside edge and flew to Chirag Khurana's hands at first slip. However, that was the last bit of success that Maharashtra had for the day as Kedar Devdhar joined Waghmode.

Devdhar maintained his aggressive intent all through-out as he hit 10 boundaries over the course of his innings and ran hard. The pair added 93 runs as Baroda took tea at 177 for three. Waghmode played the ideal second fiddle, maintaining his composure for a sedate unbeaten 87. Devdhar soon reached his second First Class hundred.

Devdhar who averaged 16.5 before his hundred said that it was important for him to get runs. "I had to justify my place in the side. I just had to adjust and check my shots a little." he said.

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