Abhishek Raman

Ranji Trophy 2017/18: Ton up Tiwary gives Bengal an edge over Himachal

New record for Cheteshwar Pujara in Domestic cricket


[caption id="attachment_57405" align="aligncenter" width="580"]IMG_8886 Bengal in command against Himachal at the end of Day 2. Image Source: XtraTime[/caption]

Kolkata: Bengal’s star pace duo of Mohammed Shami and Ashoke Dinda bowled brilliantly in the final session after a gritty century of skipper Manoj Tiwary as the visitors Himachal Pradesh is tottering at 163/5 in reply to Bengal’s massive score of 419 in a group D encounter at the Eden gardens today.

Mohammed Shami (2/74) took the crucial wicket of Priyanshu Khanduri who was batting on 52. Just a gap of two deliveries, Bengal speedster Ashoke Dinda (2/39) took the wicket of Nikhil Gangta (24) who is going through the form of his life. The play had stopped after 39.3 overs as the Group toppers were still trailing by 256 runs.

After the start of day’s play Bengal skipper went on to score his 24th first-class century. It was also his first of the season.

Manoj completed his ton in just 167 balls and got a good support from Shreevats Goswami as the duo shared an important 64-run partnership.

Bengal innings folded just after the lunch break as Rishi Dhawan (4/86) and Jaiswal wiped the tail but not before they crossed the 400-mark with Mohammed Shami's 22-ball 26 that included two fours and two sixes.

While chasing a big score, Himachal were reduced to 9/1 as Dinda dismissed Prashant Chopra (6) in the third over of Himachal innings.Though after that skipper Sumeet Verma (64) and Khanduri looked in control to lay a solid foundation.

Bengal bowlers struggled to get any help from the wicket and Shami was expensive with Verma hitting six of his seven boundaries against the India pacer, en route to notch his halfcentury in 50 balls.

The duo added 92 runs for the second wicket before Mukesh Kumar gave the breakthrough dismissing the Himachal captain caught-behind.

Shami looked lacklustre and got his first wicket -- Paras Dogra (7) -- in the ninth over and conceded 74 runs in his 13 overs.

The duo however could not consolidate as Bengal pegged back with Shami getting a reverse to trap Khanduri before Dinda swung the match in their favour as Himachal lost further ground losing a second wicket in three balls.

In other Ranji matches, India’s star top order batsman in Tests, Cheteshwar Pujara claimed the record of most double centuries Domestic cricket today in Saurashtra’s match against Jharkhand in a Group B Ranji Trophy game at Rajkot. Pujara played a knock of 204 runs to reach his 12th double ton. He surpassed former great Vijay Merchant who had 11 tons in his kitty. Batting greats like Vijay Hazare, Sunil Gavaskar and Rahul Dravid are jointly holding the third spot in the list with 10 double centuries each.

Vidarbha is in firm control over Services. Batting first Vidarbha posted a big total of 385 on board thanks to a brilliant ton from Faiz Fazal (136). He was well backed by Ganesh Satish 78 and S R Ramaswamy 55. In reply, Services is on 141/4 at the end of second day’s play. Rahul Singh is unbeaten at the crease on 57.

At Raipur, Punjab is on top against Chhattisgarh at the end of Day 2. Batting first Chhatisgarh were all-out on mere 238. In reply reply Punjab is still batting on 481/6. Anmolpreet Singh is still at the crease. The other batsmen who shine during Punjab’s batting were  Singh 111 and Jiwanjot Singh 75. Shourabh Kharwar took 3/90 for Chhattisgarh.

Brief Scores

In Kolkata: Bengal 419; 121.3 overs (Abhishek Raman 176, Manoj Tiwary 123; Rishi Dhawan 4/86, Pankaj Jaiswal 3/83) vs Himachal Pradesh 163/5; 39.3 overs (Sumeet Verma 64, Priyanshu Khanduri 52).

In Nagpur: Vidarbha 385; 124.5 overs (Faiz Fazal 136, Ganesh Satish 78, S R Ramaswamy 55) vs Services 141/4; 53 overs (Rahul Singh 57 batting, Ravi Chauhan 44).

In Raipur: Chhatisgarh 238. Punjab 481/6 (Anmolpreet Singh 171 batting, Gurkeerat Singh 111, Jiwanjot Singh 75; Shourabh Kharwar 3/90).

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