Ranji semi-final: Aakash Chopra's century put Rajasthan on top

Rajasthan cricket is reliving its glorious past at the moment but the event marking it is looking anything but gala. Fog delayed the sun but when it broke out Rajasthan batsmen made hay in the Ranji semi-final against former champions Tamil Nadu. Sadly there was hardly anyone to witness it. Aakash Chopra (115*) found his old self, cocooned in his shell. The former India and Delhi opener left everything doubtful outside off to rack up his third ton of the season. Vineet Saxena, an old hand in this line-up and Chopra's opening buddy grafted for 72 as the duo put on their first 100-run partnership. But then, there was no thunderous applause for the two in Rajasthan whites. That, it seems, is reserved for the Rajasthan Royals here at the Sawai Man Singh Stadium.
For those interested in records, the match could mean a lot. Here is Rajasthan's first chance to make the final after the glory years in the 60s and 70s when they entered it many times. They have a strong Tamil Nadu, with the likes of L Balaji, on the ropes. At 236 for 1 after first day's play, they have wrested the initiative.