~~Point-less~~ Karnataka, Gujarat to clash

Published: Monday, November 15, 2004, 23:53 [IST]
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Bangalore:Blank-slated Gujarat and Karnataka take on each other in the Ranji Trophy Elite Group 'A' encounter at M Chinnaswamy Stadium here tomorrow to get into the winning ways.

In their first matches, Gujarat drew with Delhi, who collected two points for gaining first innings lead, while a Sourav Ganguly-included Bengal humbled Karnataka by 116 runs.

So, the task is cut out for the two teams who are yet to pick up any point.

"The boys have talent and potential. They require more exposure," said Gujarat team's chief coach and consultant Anshuman Gaekwad. He expressed the view that a victory against Delhi would have made the team complacent; so, the draw was okay to start off with.

But it was not an ordinary draw at Ahmedabad last week.

Gujarat virtually brought the star-studded Delhi to their knees. Chasing a modest victory target of 157, Delhi suffered a dramatic batting collapse and ended on 102 for nine just about managing to cling on.

But the host Karnataka has batting worries. Barring Sujith Somasundar, who top-scored with 48 and 46 in two innings for the team, big scores have eluded other batsmen.

"Our batting didn't click", admitted Karnataka Coach K Jeshwanth, noting that the top order should come good.

Karnataka would no doubt seek to exploit the home advantage.

The most familiar face in the Gujarat team is that of Parthiv Patel, who is seeking to enhance his wicketkeeping skills, after being dropped during the series against Aussies.

Karnataka has left out Sudhindra Shinde who is down with shoulder injury and brought in C Raghu in the 15-member squad, while there is no change in the Gujarat team.

The teams (from):

Karnataka: J Arun Kumar (Captain), Barrington M Rowland, Sujith Somasundar, K Shyam Ponnappa, R Vijay Bharadwaj, V S Thilak Naidu (wicketkeeper), Stuart T Binny, Sunil B Joshi, D Ganesh, Udit B Patel, N C Aiyappa, Santosh K Vadeyaraj, C Raghu, Deepak A Chaougule and R Vinay Kumar.

Gujarat: Mukund Parmar (Captain), Nilesh Modi, Parthiv Patel, Akash Christian, Niraj Patel, Kirat Damani, Bhavik Thakkar, Timil Patel, Siddharth Trivedi, Lait Patel, Ashraf Makda, Hitesh Majmudar, Hem Joshipura, Swapnil Patel and Jayes Makla.

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