Belagavi (Karnataka): Priyank Kirit Panchal smashed an unbeaten 134 as Gujarat batsmen sent Punjab bowlers for a leatherhunt to score 281 for 2 on the opening day of their Ranji Trophy Group A match on Tuesday.
It was a tough day for Punjab bowlers, who toiled without much reward, after their captain Gurkeerat Singh inserted the opposition after winning the toss at the KSCA Stadium here.
Opener Panchal was the star for Gujarat, carrying his bat through the first day, as he hit 12 fours in his 252-ball yet-to-be-conquered knock.
Panchal added 143 for the second wicket with Bhargav Merai, who made 65, and another 111 with Rujul Bhatt (55 batting) for the unbroken third-wicket stand.
Samit Gohel (16), the other opener, was the only Gujarat batsmen who did not have a substantial score on the opening day which saw 82 overs being bowled.
Manpreet Gony (1/31) and Sandeep Sharma (1/57) were the wicket-takers for Punjab.
Brief Scores: Gujarat 1st Innings: 281 for 2 in 82 overs (Priyank Kirit Panchal 134 batting, Bhargav Merai 65, Rujul Bhatt 55 batting).
Match between MP and Baroda evenly poised after day one
In Dharamsala, the Ranji Trophy match between Baroda and Madhya Pradesh was evenly poised after the first day's play with the former team reduced to 31 for two at stumps in reply to the latter's modest first-innings score of 217 all out.
As many as 12 wickets fell on the day for 248 runs.
Put in to bat, Madhya Pradesh were bowled out for a mere 217 after right-arm pacer Babashafi Pathan claimed career-best figures of five for 48.
The only bright spot in Madhya Pradesh's batting line-up was skipper Devendra Bundela, playing his record-breaking 137th Ranji Trophy match, who top-scored with 86 runs off 120 balls studded with 14 boundaries.
But eventually he was run out, becoming the ninth wicket to fall.
Baroda also lost two early wickets with Puneet Datey (2/7) taking both the scalps.
At the close of play, Aditya Waghmode, unbeaten on 10, and Deepak Hooda on 14 were at the crease.
Brief scores: Madhya Pradesh 1st innings: 217 all out in 67.5 overs (Devendra Bundela 86; Babashafi Pathan 5/48). Baroda 1st innings: 31 for 2 in 15 overs.