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Bengal march into Ranji trophy semifinals

10th June 2022
Bengal rode on record-breaking batting display and dominating bowling to brush aside opponents Jharkhand in an one-sided affair to reach the semifinals of Ranji trophy for the second time in a row by the virtue of first innings lead today in Bengaluru.
Following the victory CAB President Avishek Dalmiya visited the team in Bangalore today and while lauding the team he said: "The record is a thing in the past already. Now the team should shift gears and start preparing for the semi finals which would be much tougher. There is no place to be complacent. We have to keep our focus on the next match. Winning Ranji Trophy is the final marker for the team and we should not forget that."
Resuming the final day on 76/3 Bengal piled up 318/7 with experienced campaigner Manoj Tiwary slamming a fluent 136 off 185 balls and the match resulted in a draw.
Bengal head coach Arun Lal spoke after reaching the Ranji trophy semifinals: "Very happy with the performance. It feels good but our aim is to win thr trophy and this is a step closer to that. The boys are taking a complete day off tomorrow and we'll practice the day after. I am very impressed with Manoj. He hasn't played a lot cricket recently, didn't get much time for club cricket either, his fitness got hampered because of the knee problem- but his commitment to the game has been inspirational. If he was not getting much runs in the practice matches, I saw him in the nets all the time and he coming into form is going to be our biggest asset. He's a legend, he's among the top five cricketers Bengal ever had. His form is making us a really strong unit."
"Our President Mr. Dalmiya coming here and congratulating us for thr record has been inspirational to all of us. He distributed bouquets and good wishes to all, we are truly honoured," he added.
Earlier Bengal wrote history in the first innings after becoming the first team in the world to have nine batters score at least fifty in a first class match and declared on 773/7.
While bowling all-rounders Shahbaz Ahamad and Sayan Sekhar Mondal picked up 4 wickets apiece to bundle Jharkhand for 298.
Bengal skipper Abhimanyu Easwaran said: "It feels very good to be honest to reach the semifinals. The team is in good shape and form, we have worked on our batting and have done well in the knockouts with our batting. We have enjoyed the moment, will take a day's break and then again we will be back to get us prepared for the next."

Rio Dutta