Anustup's unbeaten ton, gritty Shahbaz
put Bengal in driver's seat
20th February 2020
A classy 136 not out by Anustup Majumdar and a swashbuckling 82 not out by Shahbaz helped Bengal post a fighting 308 for 6 on the opening day of the Ranji Trophy Quarter Finals against Odhisa at Cuttack today.
Put to bat first Bengal got in deep trouble losing 5 wickets for a platry 46 runs till experienced campaigner Anustup stiched two very crucial partnerships with Sreevats Goswami and Shahbaz to steady the ship.
The centurion said: "I played according to the situation. The wicket was favouring the bowlers for first two sessions. Me and Sreevats decided to take our time because we knew the wicket's going to ease out after those two sessions."
Shahbaz has been outstanding. Not only this match but Shahbaz has been consistent throughout the season with both ball and bat. He's one of the main reasons we are here. A very good all-rounder for Bengal. I will try carry forward my partnership with Shahbaz and score as much as we can tomorrow. Till now no plan to declare," he added.
Anustup put his head down trying to bail the visitors out of trouble and added 95 and 167 runs off sixth and seventh wicket respectively.
Bengal coach Arun Lal added: "There's no plan to declare and score as many as we can. I want Anustup to get a double hundred, Shahbaz to get his first hundred- he deserves it. They have to carry on playing with lot of responsibility, it's knockouts. Both of them are sensational players. I kept telling them 'play for one', 'each run counts'."
After Sreevats went back for 34 runs young all-rounder Shahbaz came to the crease and played a patient innings of unbeaten 82 runs off 154 balls.
The Bengal coach heaped praise on both the players saying: "Anustup has been very good throughout the season. He's playing very good and today he was just magnificent. He's been scoring good runs for us and I used to keep telling him why are you not getting bigger runs. He's been sensational. Shahbaz is turning every game around for Bengal. Very good player he is. I am really proud to have these guys in the team."
Odisha bowlers Suryakant Pradhan and Preet Chohan bagged 2 wickets apiece.
CAB MEDIA DESK