Bengal’s bowler, Ishan Porel has complemented Anustup Majumdar’s unbeaten century with a five-wicket haul, putting his team in command against Karnataka in their Ranji Trophy semi-final on Sunday in Kolkata.
Majumdar had a day earlier registered 149 not out which propelled Bengal to 312 after being down at 67 for six at a stage.
Against the star-studded opponents, the 21-year-old Porel got five wickets and conceded 39 runs with the three-pronged Bengal pace attack dismissing the batting-heavy Karnataka for a paltry 122 in 36.2 overs. This is Kanakta’s lowest total this season.
India opener KL Rahul, could not replicate his form for the national team. Rahul looked out of ideas and scored just 26 runs from 67 balls.
Spinner Krishnappa Gowtham was among the top players for Karnataka after scoring a quick 56 runs off 46 balls). Abhimanyu Mithun (24) who was trying to help Karnataka avoid the follow-on conceded a massive 190-run first-innings lead.
On day two, a total of 15 wickets tumbled with Bengal on 72 for 4 at stumps with Sudip Chatterjee (40 not out) partnering Majumdar (1 not out). This has extended the hosts’ overall lead to a sizable 262 runs.
After surviving a no-ball from Ronit More in the fag end, Majumdar is still in the game. This has brightened Bengal’s prospects of the first final in Ranji Trophy in 13 years.
With Karnakata losing the first inning, they will have to pull off something special in their second inning to avoid losing their third straight semi-final game in the competition.
Recall that Majumdar had played in a 207-ball knock spanning five hours, helping Bengal to pull out a sensational performance with their last four batsmen adding 245 runs, having been down in the game at a point.
Majumdar frustrated the Karnataka bowlers, with three sixes and 21 boundaries while last man Porel added 54 runs from 79 balls.
While bowling, Porel gave Bengal the first breakthrough after inducing an edge from R Samarth (0). The ball angled in before straightening up giving Manoj Tiwary to the chance at the second slip.
He also removed Karun Nair (3) in the first ball of his second over, which was almost like his first wicket. Nair was caught by Maujmdar at the first slip.
Rahul was aiming to rebuild Karnataka innings while partnering Krishnamurthy Siddharth. But Siddhart was dismissed later by Akash Deep (3/30) for 14.
Mukesh Kumar (2/46), who opened his wicket account in the game by cleaning out Manish Pandey’s (12) later removed Rahul, which drove Bengal camp into wild jubilation.
In-form 19-year-old left-handed opener Devdutt Padikkal, who was surprisingly dropped down to six was Porel’s third victim.
Written by: Oladipupo Mojeed