Rookie Abhishek slams successive fifty as Bengal gain upperhand over Hyderabad

  • | Thursday | 24th February, 2022

Cuttack, Feb 24 (PTI) Wicketkeeper-batter Abhishek Porel continued his fine form with a second half century on the trot as Bengal took an upper-hand on day one of their Ranji Trophy group B match against Hyderabad at the Barabati Stadium here on Thursday. Abhishek, who scored a resilient second innings unbeaten half-century in their thrilling win over Baroda in the last match, once again provided the resistance for Bengal batting at No.8 with a quick 62-ball 73 (10x4) to take them to 242 in 70.2 overs after they were sent in. Bengal pacer Mukesh Kumar rattled the Hyderabad top-order by dismissing opener Akshath Reddy (0) and Tilak Varma (0) in successive overs to finish day one on 15/2, trailing by 227 runs. Like against Baroda when Abhishek and Shahbaz Ahmed produced a match-winning 108-run unbroken stand, the duo showed Bengal the way after they were reeling at 116/6, following the loss of Sayan Sekhar Mondal (34), Anustup Majumdar (29) and veteran Manoj Tiwary (2) in the space of just nine runs. Abhishek took charge in the partnership with 10 boundaries on both sides of the wicket, while Shahbaz chipped in with a 61-ball 40 (2x4) in their 74-run stand for the seventh wicket. But Abhishek could not convert it into a bigger score and was cleaned up by Ravi Teja to get out for 73. "I tried to stay positive, played with positive intent and tried to perform what I"ve practiced so far. I"m also disappointed not to have converted my start and miscued the delivery," Abhishek said. "There was no extra pressure. I was confident, as in the last match also I had done the same job while coming in to bat lower down the order," added the player, who made a gritty 53 not out in his debut innings. Earlier, Bengal skipper Abhimanyu Easwaran was dismissed for zero by Ravi Teja while Sudip Gharami (14) also got out cheaply as the Hyderabad seam duo of Ravi Teja (3/48) and debutant B Punnaiah (2/32) rocked the top-order before left-arm spinner Tanay Thyagarajan (5/71) came into the act. Brief Scores: At Barabati Stadium: Bengal 242; 70.2 overs (Abhishek Banerjee 73, Shahbaz Ahmed 40; Tanay Thyagarajan 5/71, Ravi Teja 3/48, B Punnaiah 2/32). Hyderabad 15/2; 9 overs (Mukesh Kumar 2/3). Match to continue. At Vikas Cricket Ground: Chandigarh 168; 62.3 overs (Manan Vohra 43, Raj Bawa 32; Abhimanyusingh Rajput 5/47, Bhargav Bhatt 2/27, Babashafi Pathan 2/30). Baroda 80/1; 21 overs. Match to continue. PTI TAP PM PM PM

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