Mumbai clinch Ranji Trophy for 42nd time, beat Vidarbha by 169 runs in final

Mumbai end eight-year wait, clinch 42nd Ranji Trophy title
Mumbai end eight-year wait, clinch 42nd Ranji Trophy title
Mumbai end eight-year wait, clinch 42nd Ranji Trophy title

Mumbai | Domestic heavyweights Mumbai ended their eight-year barren run to lift a record-extending 42nd Ranji Trophy title on Thursday, beating a resolute Vidarbha by 169 runs on the fifth and final day of a thoroughly engrossing summit clash.

The fate of the final -- Mumbai's 48th in the 90 years of the tournament's history -- here at the iconic Wankhede Stadium was sealed when the hosts set a 538-run target for the visiting team.

Vidarbha captain Akshay Wadkar (102) and the unheralded Harsh Dubey (65) kept Mumbai at bay for the entire first session after Vidarbha resumed on 248 for five, needing another 290 runs to win. The team was eventually bowled out for 368.

In a contest that ebbed and flowed, Mumbai came out as the winners after Vidarbha frustrated them for long periods of play in the last two days.

Wadkar not only led the fight for his side with his first century of the year while also crossing the 600-run mark this season. Dubey brought up only his second fifty of the first-class career.

Together, they forged the longest stand of the innings, consuming 255 balls in 194 minutes from day four until a little after the resumption of the second session on the final day.

Wadkar fell shortly after play resumed -- leg before off Tanush Kotian (4/95) -- and once the pair was broken, it all ended in a jiffy for the visitors who have now lost the Ranji Trophy final on the third instance after winning two titles.

Tushar Deshpande continued employ the short ball to dismiss Dubey (65 off 128 balls, 5 x4s, 2x6s) and Aditya Sarwate, who missed the majority of the game owing to a back spasm.

While Kotian cleaned up Yash Thakur (6) for his fourth wicket, Dhawal Kulkarni signed off from all forms of cricket with the final wicket of the game in the form of Umesh Yadav for a fairytale ending.

Brief scores:

Mumbai: 224 & 418

Vidarbha: 105 & 368 in 134.4 overs (Atharva Taide 32, Aman Mokhade 32, Karun Nair 74, Akshay Wadkar 102; Tanush Kotian 4/95) by 169 runs.

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