Surat: Manpreet Juneja (61) and Rujul Bhatt (51) cracked twin fifties to power Gujarat to 252 for six in their first innings against Madhya Pradesh on the opening day of their Group B Ranji Trophy match here on Sunday.
Juneja hit six boundaries and one six in his 101-ball innings, while Bhatt was more patient as he had just a couple of fours to show in his 142-ball stay.
For MP, Puneet Datey (2/51) and Jalaj S Saxena (2/52) were the pick of the bowlers with two wickets, while Ishwar Pandey (1/34), Ankit Kushwah (1/43) took one wicket each.
Electing to bat, Gujarat found the going tough as they lost their openers -- SK Patel (7) and PK Panchal (22) at the score of 55 for two in 21.2 overs.
Patel was the first to go when he was caught behind by wicketkeeper Naman Ojha off Pandey's bowling. Panchal too could not stay longer as he was back into the pavilion after being cleaned up by Kushwah.
Bhargav Merai (40) and Parthiv Patel tried to steady the innings but the latter was dismissed by Datey with Shrivastava taking the catch in the 25th over. Datey returned in the 37th over to get rid off Merai as he trapped him infront of wicket as Gujarat slipped to 109 for four.
Juneja then took the onus on himself and shared 73 runs with Bhatt, before he became the victim of Jalaj S Saxena in the 63rd over. Bhatt was the last batsman to be dismissed today when he was caught by Harpreet Singh off Sexena's ball in the 83rd over.
Axar Patel (35) and Rush Kalaria (4) were at the crease at the Lalabhai Contractor Stadium when the stumps were drawn.
Gujarat 1st innings: 252 for six in 90 overs (M C Juneja 61; PM Datey 2/51).