Railways rues toss as Jaffer cracks ton

Published: Sunday, November 7, 2004, 23:53 [IST]
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New Delhi:Wasim Jaffer staked his claim for a Test recall with a majestic century as defending champions Mumbai punished Railways' decision to bowl first on a dead track in the Ranji Trophy Elite A season opener here today.

Jaffer gave the kind of start of start Mumbai had hoped for as he unleashed an array of strokes at the Karnail Singh stadium and seemed set for a huge knock before he fell to the second new ball at close on the opening day.

The right-hander's 157 came in 253 balls, spanned 360 minutes and contained 20 fours and a six.

Home captain Sanjay Bangar was left to rue his decision as Mumbai reached 261 for the three, a modest score by modern standards but far from what he would have settled for in the morning.

Amol Muzumdar was unbeaten on 62 when Jaffer snicked J P Yadav to wicketkeeper Sudhir Wankhede off the penultimate ball of the last over of the day.

Bangar might have expected his seamers, Harvinder Singh and Yadav, to exploit the morning dew of an early winter. And he seemed to be justified when Singh had Vinayak Mane (6) caught at forward short-leg in the third over.

But it was all downhill from thereon as Jaffer and newcomer Vineet Indulkar denied the hosts further breakthroughs with their sound defence.

Jaffer's sparkling century came under pressure following a series of low scores, most notably his twin failures in the Irani Cup. The India batsman was at his stylish best today, with elegant shots on both sides of the wicket.

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