Saurashtra Coach Looking to Bat Bengal Out of Ranji Trophy Final

Last Updated: February 17, 2023, 20:32 IST

Niraj Odedra (Twitter Image)

Saurashtra were going strong at 317 for five at the close of play.

If head coach Niraj Odedra’s words are any indications, Saurashtra are looking to bat Bengal out of the Ranji Trophy final on the third day of the title clash here.

Bowled out for 174 in their first innings, things went from bad to worse for Bengal on the second day, as the visitors stretched their lead to 143 runs at the Eden Gardens.

Saurashtra were going strong at 317 for five at the close of play.

“We got to bat a little bit longer. Basically we want to see through the first session (tomorrow), till lunch. If we can extend that till evening it would be better. The longer we bat, the better it would be,” Odedra said on Friday.

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“The wicket also eased out a bit, it will be even better tomorrow. That’s how most of the wickets are in India, as moisture dries up. It’s still a long way,” he added.

Odedra’s counterpart, Laxmi Ratan Shukla, despite conceding a massive first-innings lead to the opponents, refused to believe that it was as good as over for them.

“There are still three more days left in the match. You have to think before giving a headline,” Shukla told reporters.

Shukla hoped their four-man pace attack will return fresh and wrap up the issue at the earliest.

“First session will be very important tomorrow. We will start fresh and if we get them all out early, we will still have time. We still have a long way to go in the match. We will come back hard.” Shukla added, “I don’t want to single out anything but there were a lot of blemishes. Also the wicket was not helpful for the bowlers, there was not much lateral movements.” Arpit Vasavada top-scored with an 81 not out to lead Saurashtra’s response after Bengal’s forgettable outing with the bat on the opening day.

At stumps on the second evening, Chirag Jani (57 not out) was giving Vasavada company, the two having added 113 runs for the fifth wicket.

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