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Upbeat Bengal eager for perfect start

31st October 2018
An upbeat Bengal side will look for a perfect start to the campaign when they take on Himachal Pradesh in their Ranji Trophy opener in Amtar tomorrow.
Manoj Tiwary and men will be desperate to perform well after a disappointing Vijay Hazare Trophy with a team that is well balanced.
Coach Sairaj Bahutule today said that the team was upbeat and had two very fruitful sessions in Himachal.
Asked about the wicket, he said: "The wicket looked sporting with little grass on one side. Winter is just setting in so it's cold in the morning and evening. During the day it's warm."
All-rounder Shahbaz Ahmed and leg-spinner Prayash Ray Burman are the two new faces in the Bengal team along with veteran cricketer and former coach Arun Lal who is the newly appointed mentor.
Sairaj has earlier marked Bengal as a balanced side which is crafted with experienced players like skipper Tiwary, Ashoke Dinda, Anustup Majumdar, Shreevats Goswami and the likes of Abhimanyu Easwaran along with youngsters like Ishan Porel, Prayas Roy Burman, Shahbaz Ahmed.
Asked if toss would be a factor Bahutule said: "I don't think so."
On the opposition, he said: "They are a very good side with right mix of youth and experience. They have players like Rishi Dhawan and Pankaj Jaiswal in their ranks."
When about the team combination, he said the plan is to go with five specialised batsmen and an all-rounder, but the final decision will be taken after seeing the wicket tomorrow.

Arindam Basu