GUWAHATI, Nov 25 - The Ranji Trophy match between Assam and Maharashtra is at an interesting stage.
At the end of the penultimate day of the four-day match at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune today, the host team is trailing by 138 in their first innings with four wickets in hand as they finished the day with 160 for six in reply to Assam�s 298.
Rohit Motwani and Shrikant Shrihari Mundhe were at the crease with 13 and 5 respectively when stumps were drawn for the day.
Assam tail enders today failed to deliver as after Gokul Sharma�s departure in the 92nd over at team�s total of 255, the remaining batsmen started returning to the pavilion in quick successions. The last four batsmen even failed to reach double figure. Overnight unbeaten batsmen KB Arun Karthik and Gokul added 132 runs for the fifth wicket partnership which remained the highest and most valuable for the Assam innings. Arun scored 130 off 283 balls. He stayed at the crease for 443 minutes and hit 12 boundaries and one six. Gokul gave him accompany for 227 minutes and faced 149 deliveries. Gokul hit 11 fours.
Assam medium pacers Krishna Das and Dhiraj Goswami made a brilliant start removing top four batsmen for 60. But a 67-run partnership for the fifth wicket between Rahul Ajay Tripathi (52 off 111 balls, 4X9) and Kedar Mahadav Jadhav (36) steadied the Maharashtra innings.
Krishna had an impressive bowling figure of 4 for 58 today while Dhiraj took two for 46.
Skipper Gokul Sharma expressed his confidence over taking the first innings lead. Sharing his views after day�s play, Gokul said, both Krishna and Dhiraj were bowling superbly and as the wicket was still green top and little damp; the pacers should remove the remaining wickets in the morning session tomorrow. He, however, opined that 350 to 400 would have been better for Assam in the first innings.
Assam 1st innings: (overnight 223/4) Pallav Das c Gugale b Fallah 8, Rahul Hazarika c Motwani b Sanklecha 6, Sib Sankar Roy lbw b Sanklecha 0, Amit Verma c Bawne b Fallah 32, KB Arun Karthik c Atitkar b Mundhe 130, Gokul Sharma c Gugale b Muthuswami 76, J Syed Mohammad c Muthuswami b Mundhe 3, Amit Sinha b Mundhe 0, Amit Ahmed not out 8, Dhiraj Goswami lbw b Mundhe 0, Krishna Das lbw b Muthuswami 12. Extras (b 3, lb 12, nb 8) 23; Total (all out; 105 overs) 298; Fall of wickets: 1-18, 2-18, 3-18, 4-93, 5-255, 6-265, 7-267, 8-274, 9-275, 10-298. Bowling: SM Fallah 24-9-58-2, AA Sanklecha 16-0-55-2, DJ Muthuswami 24-7-56-2, SS Mundhe 25-7-67-4, CG Khurana 13-1-40-0, RA Tripathi 2-1-5-0, SM Gugale 1-0-2-0.
Maharashtra 1st innings: SM Gugale c Arun Karthik b K Das 27, CG Khurana lbw b Goswami 10, SD Atitkar c Arun Karthik b Goswami 6, RA Tripathi c Arun Karthik b Krishna Das 52, AR Bawne c Arun Karthik b Krishna Das 0, KM Jadhav c Gokul Sharma b Krishna Das 36, RH Motwani batting 13, Shrikant Munde batting 5. Extras (b 1, lb 4, w 5, nb 1) 11; Total (6 wickets; 54 overs): 160; Fall of wickets: 1-20, 2-33, 3-60, 4-60, 5-127, 6-150; Bowling: Krishna Das 23-5-58-4, Dhiraj Goswami 18-4-46-2, Abu Nechim Ahmed 8-2-25-0, Pallav Das 4-1-13-0, Amit Verma 1-0-13-0.