The second day of the eighth-round matches in Group C of the Ranji Trophy 2016-17 ended on Wednesday (November 30) with the contest between Goa and Andhra headed towards an interesting climax, Chhattisgarh edging ahead of Services, Himachal Pradesh looking to climb a mountain of runs stacked by Haryana, Tripura grabbing a first-innings lead over Kerala and Hyderabad gaining control against Jammu and Kashmir.
Chhattisgarh v Services in Mumbai
Resuming on eight without loss in response to Services’ 225, Chhattisgarh made 281 before being bowled out at the stroke of stumps on the second day.
Diwesh Gurdev Pathania’s clinical burst of 6 for 78 crippled Chhattisgarh early on, but in the end, half-centuries from Amandeep Khare and Manoj Singh helped them clinch a crucial first-innings lead of 56 runs.
Abhimanyu Chauhan was bowled by Sachidanand Pandey early in the day for a duck, but Sahil Gupta (36) and Anupam Toppo (21) provided some stability to the innings.
Though Toppo fell in the 11th over, Sahil and Khare strung yet another partnership to take their side close to the 100-run mark. But Pathania’s desciplined bowling had the better of the middle-order batsmen as wickets started to tumble around Khare in the afternoon. Khare himself was trapped lbw by Vikas Yadav for 51 in the 56th over.
Chhattisgarh were down to 199 for 8 at one stage and Services would have then been hoping to get a slender lead. But Manoj, the wicketkeeper, who hit nine boundaries and two sixes in his 65-ball 67 from No. 8, batted with the tailenders to give Chhattisgarh the upper hand.
Himachal Pradesh finished with 101 for 3 on the board after Haryana posted 402 at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium.
Guntashveer Singh, who scored a maiden first-class ton on the first day, could add only ten runs to his overnight score of 110 before nicking Rishi Dhawan to Ankush Bains behind the stumps. But a fifty from Rohit Sharma and small contributions from the rest of the batting unit helped Haryana finish with a big total despite Kanwar Abhinay bagging 4 for 73. Dhawan was relatively expensive, giving away 138 runs in 37 overs, but picked up three wickets in the process.
In the 34 overs Himachal Pradesh batted, they lost three wickets in the form of R Thakur (23), Prashant Chopra (33) and Paras Dogra (23), leaving Robin Bist and Sumeet Verma with a big task ahead of them on the third day.
Andhra v Goa in Dhanbad
Bowlers once again enjoyed the conditions at Railway Stadium on the second day of the contest between Andhra and Goa, which witnessed the loss of 20 wickets on the first day. A total of 13 wickets fell on the second day, which ended with Andhra needing 134 more runs with seven wickets in hand.
Sent in to bat on the first day, Goa were bundled for 115 before Andhra managed only 159. In their second innings, Goa were once again bowled out inside a day, but this time, they rode on half-centuries from Saurabh Bandekar (75) and Snehal Kauthankar (61) to post 276, setting Andhra a 233-run target for victory.
Andhra stuttered in their chase, losing three wickets – DB Prasanth Kumar, K Srikar Bharat and G Hanuma Vihari – in the 25 overs they batted, but importantly, they shaved off 99 runs from their target in that period. Dwaraka Ravi Teja (35) and Ricky Bhui (32) were unbeaten at stumps.
Manisankar Murasingh (4-52) and Sanjay Majumder (4-43) bowled with discipline to dismiss Kerala for 193 and give Tripura the first-innings lead at Barabati Stadium. When bad light stopped play for the second consecutive day, Tripura, who had made 213 in their first innings, were 17 for no loss in ten overs in their second dig, with Bishal Ghosh and Udiyan Bose in the middle and an advantage of 37.
Overnight 11 for no loss, Kerala’s top order failed to make a mark as Murasingh and Rana Dutta used the overcast conditions to good effect to remove Bhavin Thakkar and Rohan Prem within the first two overs of the morning.
Even though the sun came out and the new-ball pair ran out of steam, Majumder, the right-arm medium-pacer in his first game after almost two years, reaped rewards by sticking to a probing line. When he had Jalaj Saxena caught and trapped Mohammed Azharuddeen, the other opener who made an attractive 40, lbw, Kerala became 73 for 4. Sachin Baby and Salman Nizar tried to stop the rut with a stand of 54 runs, but Nazir missed a straight ball from Abhijeet Dey, the offspinner, to lose his stumps in the 49th over.
With the ball reversing, Majumder and Murasingh took over as wickets kept falling. The last-wicket pair of Akshay Chandran and Sandeep Warrier came together at the team score of 179 for 9, and tried to secure the lead but Murasingh trapped Warrier lbw to finish the innings.
Hyderabad v Jammu & Kashmir in Vadodara
Parveez Rasool, after bagging four wickets, hit a quickfire 70, but J&K ended their second day at 156 for 7, still trailing by 172 runs.