Karnataka bowlers were yet again on target © Getty Images (Representational photo)
By Nishad Pai Vaidya
Jan 30, 2014
The first session of Day Two of the Ranji Trophy 2013-14 final at Hyderabad belonged to Karnataka as they bundled Maharashtra out for 305. Resuming the day on 272 for five, Maharashtra lost their last five wickets for only 33 runs, with Ankit Bawne missing out on a ton. Karnataka began positively and went into lunch at 43 for no loss; although Robin Uthappa retired hurt.
The day got off to the worst possible start for Maharashtra as Abhimanyu Mithun got his first ball to move into Bawne and it snuck through the gate to disturb the woodwork. A stunned Bawne looked back and could do nothing but walk back to the hut.
Sangram Atitkar continued the fight and moved to his 50 with a few positive strokes. A flick through mid-wicket and a pull off Vinay Kumar were the major highlights for Maharashtra in the morning. Yet, the pace of scoring was slow and Karnataka then grabbed Shrikant Mundhe and Atitkar quite quickly.
Mundhe was done in by Aravind as he tried to get his bat out of the way, but the edge flew towards the slip. Manish Pandey, quite magnificently, flung himself to his right from first slip and held on to a screamer mid-air. Soon after completing his half century, Atitkar fell the Kedar Jadhav way as he tickled one down the leg-side and was taken by the wicketkeeper.
Karnataka then wiped off the tail and bundled Maharashtra out for 305. Their frontline pacers, R Vinay Kumar, Abhimanyu Mithun and Sreenath Aravind took three wickets apiece. On Day Two, Aravind stuck to his medium-pace and did not bowl his left-arm orthodox.
Karnataka started positively with Uthappa driving on the rise a few times. However, Samad Fallah for one to rise and it hit his elbow. He looked in pain and decided to walk off after some attention from the physio. Lokesh Rahul looked in good touch. He was classy in the middle, essaying numerous drives through the off-side. One of them split mid-off and covers for four.
Maharashtra did not help their chances though. Ganesh Sathish was dropped by the wicketkeeper Rohit Motwani after he had edged one off Fallah. Anupam Sanlecha dropped Rahul on 12, although it wasn’t the easiest chance.
But, Karnataka would clearly be the happier side when they head to the dressing room for lunch. They achieved their target of bowling Maharashtra out around 320 and now have to take the game by the scruff of the neck. Maharashtra need all that inspiration again.
Maharashtra 305 (Chirag Khurana 64, Ankit Bawne 89, Sangram Atitkar 50; R Vinay Kumar 3 for 81, Abhimanyu Mithun 3 for 49, Sreenath Aravind 3 for 65) lead Karnataka 43 for no loss (Lokesh Rahul 18*, Ganesh Sathish 14*) by 262 runs.