Bengal dominate demon turf
28th October 2016
On a wicket that looked possessed, Bengal batted with caution to amass 208 for nine in their second innings today against Railways to stretch the lead to 308 with two days left in the tie at Dharamshala.
At stumps on Day II of the Ranji Trophy Group-A tie, Pankaj Kumar Shaw was batting on 19 with Sayan Ghosh yet to bat.
The talk of the day was, however, the green top at Dharamshala that continued to spew venom as Ashoke Dinda and Co. made quick work of the opposition. Resuming on the overnight score of 37 for 4, Railways had a mountain to climb. But they folded up in face of some hostile bowling for just 105.
Ashoke Dinda remained pick of the bowlers with 5 wickets for just 45 runs, ably supported by Sayan Ghosh (3/31) and Amil Kuila (2/24). Ashoke Dinda later told CAB: “The wicket still has bounce and the ball is moving. It is supporting the seamers. I am bowling well in this season and hope I continue doing so. Getting five wickets in a match is always good.”
Having secured a first innings lead of 100 runs, Bengal began with an advantage. It was a modest start by Bengal losing the first wicket at 37 and second at 67. But they didn’t look under pressure. Skipper Manoj Tiwary and Wriddhiman Saha played important knocks of 48 and 44 runs respectively. The patience and craft that the duo displayed in the hostile circumstances was exemplary.
In fact the top order did get a start with A. Eswaran (25), S. Mandal (30), S. Chatterjee (20) all looking to get to a substantial scores before succumbing to the opposition’s bowling. Deepak Bansal (3/40) Karan Thakur (3/39) and Amit Misra (2/62) shared the spoils as Railways continued to chip away at the wickets.
Manoj Tiwary later told CAB: “It was a difficult wicket to bat. Wriddhiman and my knocks were important to stretch the lead beyond 300. If we can add another 25 runs for the last wicket then we will be in a much better position.”
“We will try to stretch the lead as much as possible tomorrow and then get them out. But for that we need to keep the focus and bowl in the right areas or we can give away the advantage. One partnership can turn things around,” he said when asked about tomorrow’s plans.
Tiwary did not want to sound overconfident, but agreed that Bengal was in a winning position. “We are in a good position. But all that can change quickly. Cricket is a very uncertain game. So we need to play well.”
CAB MEDIA DESK
Sayan Banerjee & Arindam Basu