Ranji: Mumbai battle back into contention

Published: Saturday, November 24, 2007, 3:35 [IST]
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Mumbai: Opener Sahil Kukreja struck an unbeaten 89 to bring Mumbai back into the match against Delhi on the second day of their four-day Ranji Trophy Super League Group-A match at the Wankhede stadium here on Saturday.

Mumbai after conceding a 85 run first innings lead roared back to make 154 for two at close of play on the second day with Kukreja batting on 89 and captain Amol Muzumdar giving him company on 2.

Effectively Mumbai are now 69 runs ahead with eight second innings wickets in hand.

Earlier the host bowlers saw to it that Delhi resuming at 159 for four, after skittling out the defending champions for 166 run, were restricted at 251 all out thus conceding a 85 run lead.

Delhi lost their mainstay Gautam Gambhir soon after the addition of 10 runs to their overnight score trapped plumb in front by Abhisekh Nayar for 89 and Delhi being 169 for five.

Rajat Bhatia and P Bhist then put on a stand of 63 runs before Bhist became debutant Bhavesh Patel's first victim being caught in the slips by Amol Muzumdar. Bhist made 35 and Delhi were then 232 for six. Mumbai then took the other four wickets giving away just 19 runs with Bhatia being unlucky to miss his half century after edging Agarkar for a regulation caught behind.

The defending champions began their second innings 85 runs behind, but Sahil Kukreja stamped his authority in the first over from left arm seamer P Sangwan itself with two thunderous boundaries on the off side.

The other opener Ajinkya Rahane was given a reprieve by Akash Chopra at second slip off Ishant Sharma when the batsman was on four and Mumbai at 23 for no loss.

Kukreja went from strength to strength attacking the bowling with vigour hitting Sangwan for three boudaries in one over to bring up his 50 in just 48 balls inclusive of nine boundaries.

After the openers had put on 91 runs in 21 overs Rahane fell to Sangwan being caught behind by P Bhist for 20. Prashant Naik looked good while making 23 in which he was given one chance with V Kohli dropping him at gully of Sangwan when he was on 4 with the team total on 100 for one.

Narendra Singh then dropped Kukreja of his own bowling when the opener was on 79 and Mumbai on 128 for one to cap a miserable day in the field for Delhi.

Narendra Singh however got Naik padding up without offering a shot to be declared leg before wicket for 23 with Mumbai on 137 for 2.

Amol Muzumdar then joined Kukreja and the two played out the remainder of the day.

Brief Scores (D-2):

Mumbai 166 and 154/2 (Sahil Kukreja 89*, Prashant Naik 23; Pradeep Sangwan 1 for 52, Narender Singh 1 for 16) Vs Delhi 251 all out (Gambhir 89, Rajat Bhatia 49, Bhist 35; Salvi 3 for 44, Nayar 2 for 52, Agarkar 2 for 52).


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