Saurashtra featured in an exciting draw here Tuesday after both teams squandered chances to win the contest on the fourthand final day of their Elite Group A Ranji Trophy game. Mumbai, champions on 41 occasions and ahead of the visitors by 46 runs on the first innings, declared their second innings closed in the morning session at 238 for 8, leaving Saurashtra a target of 285 in 72 overs. Saurashtra were sailing along merrily after being 79 for two with the 113-run third wicket stand between Viswarajsinh Jadeja (71 in 129 balls) and Sheldon Jackson (57in 118 balls) bringing them closer to the target.
Jadeja was run out by a direct throw from point by Jay Bista to break the stand at 192 and then a double strike with the use of short balls in one over by medium pacer Minad Manjrekar put the skids on Saurashtra. Manjrekar got rid of both Jackson, caught slashing at deep point when Saurashtra needed 55 in ten overs, and Prerak Mankad (24 in 21 balls) three runs later to raise visions of a Mumbai victory. Manjrekar got two more wickets in that spell to send back Arpit Vasavada and rival captain Jaydev Unadkat after which Saurashtra downed the shuttlers with Chirag Jani holding fort at one end.
After four balls in the final over, the game was called off as a draw with the visitors on 266 for 7, needing 19 more runs to pull off what would have been a come-from-behind win. Jani (9) and Dharmendra Jadeja (8) were the unbeaten batsmen at the crease when the match ended. Manjrekar finished with impressive figures of 4 for39, while Shivam Dube got 2 for 50. Mumbai secured three points to boost their tally to 11and are 14th out of 18 teams in the combined A and B Groups standings with two matches left.
Saurashtra secured one point to remain on top of the combined standings with 26 points with one game in hand. Meanwhile at Shivamoga, hosts Karnataka trounced Railways by 176 runs. Senior off-spinner K Gowtham rose to the occasion and returned with match-winning figures of 6-30, as Railways were bundled out for 185 in their second essay.
At Nagpur, the Gujarat-Vidarbha game ended in a tame draw with the hosts taking the first innings lead and grabbing three crucial points. Gujarat got one point. At Raipur, hosts Chhattisgarh took three points, courtesy the first innings lead. But the hosts survived a scare with Maharashtra taking as many as six wickets in their second innings.