Indore:Skipper Gautam Gambhir (132) slammed a strokeful hundred to lead Delhi to a seven-wicket victory over Baroda and power his state into the final of the Ranji Trophy Elite group on Tuesday.
Gambhir's 179-ball 132 overshadowed Yousuf Pathan's hurricane 81-ball 113 in Baroda's second innings earlier in the day and was largely responsible for the victory after Delhi were set a victory target of 271 on the penultimate day of the five-day match at Usha Raje Cricket grounds here.
Gambhir reminded the national selectors that he was in fine fettle by scoring another century when his team badly needed it. He struck 23 fours and raised 136 runs for the first wicket with the other opener Shikhar Dhawan (48).
In the morning, it was Yusuf Pathan who showed his class to complete a brilliant century with the help of 16 fours and three sixes and helped his team raise 342.
Resuming at his overnight 86 in team total of 281 for six, Pathan was the eighth out off Amit Bhandari and Baroda shortly folded their innings in the 13th over of the day after facing 98.2 overs.
For Delhi, P Awana and Rajat Bhatia took three wickets apiece.
Chasing 271 for a win, Gambhir and Dhawan changed their strategy by playing an offensive game rather than being defensive to spoil the rhythm of Baroda bowlers.
After the openers had built a solid foundation, the middle order had no difficulty to keep the acceleration and surpass the target in the 80th over. Mithun Manhas contributed 36 while Aditya Jain remained not out on 39.
For Baroda, SY Veragi scalped one Delhi batsman for 43 while Yusuf Pathan returned one for 83 from 25 overs.