A group of bowlers from Madhya Pradesh stuck to their plans as Mumbai scored 248 for five on the first day of the Ranji Trophy final here.
Despite an opening stand of 87 between Prithvi Shaw (47, 79 balls) and Yashasvi Jaiswal (78, 163 balls), Mumbai failed to take advantage on a pitch that was not conducive to strokeplay.
The first innings total of 400-plus will now depend on the season’s highest run-scorer Sarfaraz Khan (40 batting, 125 balls), who looks good for another big innings with the dependable Shams Mulani (12 batting, 43 balls) . company.
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While left-arm spinner Kumar Karthikeya was a relentless operator from one end, sending 31 overs for figures of 1 for 91, seamer Gaurav Yadav (23-5-68-0) was clearly unlucky and the wicket columns did not reflect Were. The relentless pressure he put on Mumbai’s batsmen, especially Captain Shaw.
In fact, it was the pressure applied by Yadav that helped nippy seamer Anubhav Agarwal (19-3-56-2) and long off-spinner Saransh Jain (17-2-31-2) share the bulk of the booty. Of. Some intelligent execution of plans.
Mumbai took the advantage during the first hour after Shaw had batted and faced MP’s onslaught with Jaiswal.
Karthikeya’s strategy to start with a slow left-arm orthodox looked like it was when Jaiswal took him and smacked him over long-on for a six.
Shaw followed suit and hit Karthikeya at long off for a six as he added 87 runs for the first wicket.
But when Jaiswal wanted to continue from where he left off in the semi-finals with his drives and upper cuts, Shaw looked sharp despite his seven fours (at least three of them behind the square).
Both seamers, Anubhav and Gaurav stirred something in the air, a nice cloud cover helping their cause. He also hit the right length with the batsman exiting the pitch in both inside and away directions.
Both mills look like medium-paced fast bowlers, but they are deceptively faster than they actually appear.
In fact, the best over of the first day was the 12th over of Mumbai’s innings when Gaurav first cut Shaw in half with a big in-cutter and then bowled outgoing deliveries, hitting the bat five times in six balls.
By the end of the over, he was in his hunt.
At the other end, Jaiswal scored his first 30 off 52 balls, but then, given the two-pace nature of the pitch, began to play more cautiously. His next 48 runs came in another 111 balls.
The first breakthrough came minutes before the lunch break when Anubhav, who was bowling close to the stumps, decided to take a slightly wider step and fired two deliveries with Angle.
While Shaw managed to defend one, the second delivery saw him play across the line and the stumps began to rattle.
Armaan Jaffer (26 off 56 balls) looked solid until he tried a forward-defensive jab, noticing the extra bounce off Karthikeya, and the ball hit his bat inward and short. Yash Dubey hits a full one at mid-wicket. Diving Catch.
The pitch slowed down considerably in the second session and Suved Parkar (18) had to pay the price when a summary ball hit him and the front edge of the closed bat was lobbed for the easiest catch for rival skipper Aditya Srivastava.
The most planned dismissal was from Jaiswal, who was approaching his fourth century of the season.
Anubhav, who had started widening the crease, began cramming the left-hander for room. As he was finding it difficult to get a boundary, Jaiswal tried a square cut without much room but failed to keep it down and Dubey took a sharp low catch in the street.
Hardik Tamor (24) was living dangerously until Saransh got some drift and the delivery straightened after pitching, with Rajat Patidar hitting the outside edge at first slip.
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