UP, Bengal set eyes on Ranji One-day clash

Published: Saturday, March 18, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Lucknow:Ranji Trophy champions Uttar Pradesh and runners up Bengal are eying a replay of their summit clash, on March 21 here during the limited over edition of the same tourney.

The spirited Railways and Baroda, however, appear determined to upset their calculations in the semi-finals to be played here tomorrow.

While Railways, fresh from the lucky victory, courtesy cricket rules, over Tamil Nadu yesterday, challenge the might Sourav Ganguly inspired Bengal at the K D Singh Babu Stadium. The Baroda side, trained by 1983 World Cup winning pacer Balwindar Singh Sandhu, are in no mood to let UP to go any further for the golden double at the Gomti Nagar Stadium.

Talking to UNI here today Bengal manager Samir Dasgupta exuded confidence about his team's chances in the semi-final tomorrow. ''The team replete with youth, further elevated by the inspirational force of in-form Sourav Ganguly, has an upper edge in the encounter,'' he said.

The team led by former India glovesman Deep Dasgupta and coached by former national pacer Paras Mhambrey, has immense talent in form of willow wielders Subhomoy Das, Manoj Tiwari and are likely to use all rounder Shib Sagar Singh as super sub.

''We will go all out for a kill against Railways, through our bowling quartet of tearaway duo Ranadebo Bose and S S Paul, supported by Sanjib Sanyal and Sourashish Lahiri and handy allrounders Sourav Ganguly and Rohan Gavaskar,'' Mr Dasgupta maintained.

''We are banking on accuracy and youthfulness to beat the railway men and the outright victory over the same rivals in the four day Ranji Trophy few months back will further boost our chances,'' he added.

The Railways coach Vinod Sharma, however, differed on this count, saying that One-day match is a totally different ball game than a four day Ranji match. ''We have a well balanced side which is capable of turning the table against Bengal,'' he added.

''One-day game is anybody's game and with Railways boasting in its ranks two of the best all rounders in the national cricket, J P Yadav and Sanjay Bangar, Bengal may well be on the losing side,'' he hoped.

Besides the team has many other One-day specialists including T P Singh, Shreyas Khanolkar, former national pacer Harvindar Singh, Yere Goud and spinner Kulamani Parida.

Meanwhile, team India allrounder Suresh Raina, who made his debut as UP captain in the quarter final with a convincing eight wicket win against Karnataka in Kanpur yesterday, expressed confidence about capping a golden Ranji double for the hosts.

''We are playing to home advantage with at least five of our players rising to state ranks only from the Gomti Nagar ground. It will be a prideful possession to be the leader of a side which is progressing well on the road to golden Ranji double,'' he added.

The stocky skipper from Ghaziabad said we have in our team players like Jyoti Yadav, Ravi Kant Shukla, pacers Praveen Kumar, Shalabh Srivastava, Ratnesh Mishra and spinner Ali Murtaza, who will make their best to offset the absence of Mohd. Kaif, Piyush Chawla and R P Singh.

The Baroda coach and medium pacer of the only World Cup winner Indian side in 1983, Balwindar Singh Sandhu, however pointed out that his team beat UP in the league stage of the four day Ranji matches recently and that would work as a psychological advantage for them. ''We are going to spoil UP party with a facile win, on the ground which they claim is the nursery of their players,'' he added.

''The team led by former India player Jacob Martin and powered by the pace of injury prone speedstar Zaheer Khan, besides in form pacer Yusuf Pathan and trusted bat Connor Williams, will once again humble the promising UP side,'' Sandhu quipped.


Uttar Pradesh: Suresh Raina (Capt), Rohit Prakash, Shivakant Shukla, Ravi Kant Shukla, Jyoti Yadav, Mohd. Saif, Anshul Kapoor, Mohd. Amir Khan (wicket keeper), Praveen Kumar, Ali Murtaza, Ratnesh Mishra, Praveen Gupta, A Verma, A W Zaidi, Avinash Yadav, Shalabh Srivastava, Ashwini Mandhani.

R S Hans (Coach) Gopal Sharma (Manager).

Baroda: J Martin (Capt), C Williams, Y Pathan, H Parab, P Shah, A Bhoite, Zaheer Khan, S Bohra, K Panchal, D Mahata, V Parmar, D Salvi, I Pathan (Sr), S Gayakwad, H Parmar.

B S Sandhu (Coach).

West Bengal: Deep Das Gupta (Capt/ WK), Sourav Ganguly, Subhomoy Das, Abhishek Jhunjhunwala, Rohan Gavaskar, Manoj Tiwari, Laxmi Ratan Shukla, Sanjib Sanyal, Sourasish Lahiri, Ranadeb Bose, S S Paul, Subhojit Paul, Debobrata Das, K H Mondal, S S Singh.

Paras Mambrey (Coach) Sameer Das Gupta (Manager).

Indian Railways: Sanjay Bangar (Capt), Amit Pagnis, J Shankar Rao, T P Singh, J P Yadav, Raja Ali, Shreyash Khanolkor, Yere Goud, Rahul Deb, Harwinder Singh, K Parida, Madan Yadav, Santosh Sahu, Rahul Thakur, Shushant.

Vinod Sharma(coach).

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