Vinay Kumar has put Karnataka in the driver's seat    IANS
Vinay Kumar has put Karnataka in the driver’s seat IANS

It was expected to be a mouth-watering contest between two heavyweights, and Day One lived upto the hype. Opting to bowl, Karnataka skipper Vinay Kumar led from the front and rattled Mumbai within the first half hour. Removing the top order in a flash, Vinay became the fourth bowler in Ranji Trophy to claim a hat-trick twice. His 6-for restricted Mumbai to 173. Dhawal Kulkarni’s 75 ensured Mumbai got past 150. However, their bowlers have to step up and not allow Karnataka dictate terms on Friday.

Karnataka are already 115 for 1 at stumps, and look set to build a mammoth lead going forward. Courtesy an 83-run stand between Mayank Agarwal and Ravikumar Samarth, Karnataka batsmen have complimented the bowlers. Samarth lost his scalp after being deceived by the pace and length of newbie Shivam Dube. On the other hand, Agarwal continued to add runs at will. He was solid with his footwork and did not shy away from taking the aerial route. He is unbeaten, and will definitely add to Mumbai’s growing concerns.

Earlier, Vinay’s early setbacks laid a solid platform. He found the edges on regular basis and stuck to consistent lines. He was supported by Abhimanyu Mithun and Sreenath Aravind. The duo shared 3 wickets in between. Vinay, playing his 100th First-Class match, became the seventh Karnataka bowler to claim a hat-trick in Ranji Trophy. In addition, he also entered the top ten wicket-takers list in the tournament history (376).

Mumbai surpassed 150-run mark thanks to Kulkarni’s fifty. He played with Karnataka bowlers’ patience as they searched for the final wicket. Nonetheless, Kulkarni will have to take charge with the ball as well to stage Mumbai’s recovery.

Brief scores

Mumbai 173 all-out (Akhil Herwadkar 32, Dhawal Kulkarni 75; Vinay Kumar 6 for 34, Sreenath Aravind 2 for 45) lead Karnataka 115 for 1 (Mayank Agarwal 62*, Ravikumar Samarth 40; Shivam Dube 1 for 11) by 58 runs.