Geneal cricket stadium

Right from the commencement of the Ranji Trophy 2013-14 season, last year’s finalists Tamil Nadu have been in the wrong end and now tottering at the sixth place © Getty images (Representational Photo)

Chennai: Nov 27, 2013

Former Ranji Trophy champions Tamil Nadu will hold a slight edge over Saurashtra when the teams lock horns in their Ranji Trophy group B league encounter starting at the Chepauk on Thursday.

Right from the commencement of the season, last year’s finalists Tamil Nadu have been in the wrong end and now tottering at the sixth place amongst eight teams with 7 points from three drawn and one abandoned games so far.

On the other hand, Saurashtra have commenced their campaign with a superb display and inflicted an innings and 31 run win defeat to Rajasthan, have drawn against Uttar Pradesh, Bengal and Railways — the table toppers with 17 points.

However, going by the present form and depth in their batting, Tamil Nadu enjoys an edge over Saurashtra, though India medium pacer Jayadev Unadkat is set to join the team.

Like opening batsman, Murali Vijay of Tamil Nadu, Unadkat will also be taking to this match as an excellent opportunity to sharpen his skills.

As for Tamil Nadu, who enjoys home advantage are still under pressure not having scored an outright win despite a well-balanced squad.

However, captain Laxmipathy Balaji expressed confidence in his team lthough things didn’t work out as per plan in the last match.

Sausrahstra captain Jaydev Shah said,”Tamil Nadu have a strong batting line-up and if play to our potential, we should be able to make a mark in the final outcome of this match”.

Poor bowling and fielding have been the reasons for the hosts mixed performances this season besides lack of killer instinct in crunch situations.

They failed to cash in on strong situations in their previous three matches. Perhaps, they would be going all out for an outright win since playing at home.

However, it is not going to be easy task ahead as Cheteshwar Pujarara has also joined their ranks before departing for South Africa next month.

Tamil Nadu too have a good batting strength as key batsmen Baba Aparajith, S Badrinath, R Prasanna, Dinesh Karthik and also Murali Vijay, who has been in scratchy form.