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Mazumdar's ton helps Mumbai to huge lead

January 03, 2007 21:14 IST

Captain Amol Muzumdar led Mumbai's charge with a century while Rohit Sharma and Abhsishek Nair slammed fifties to help the home team take a huge 309-run lead over Rajasthan on the second day of their four-day Ranji Trophy Elite division Group B match on Wednesday.

Mumbai, replying to Rajasthan's paltry first innings total of 155, ended the day at 464 for 8 --powered by Muzumdar's innings of 117 and backed up by good contributions from Sharma (72), who braved a bad back to resume his interrupted innings, and Nair (86).

Mumbai had commenced the day at 93 for two and gathered runs relentlessly against a below-par Rajasthan attack that depended mostly on their spinners, Mohd Aslam and Rahul Kanwat, to make inroads.

Left-arm spinner Aslam picked five wickets, but after giving away 132 runs in 39 overs. His victims included both Muzumdar, who fell when in sight of overhauling Ashok Mankad and becoming the hosts' highest run-getter in the national championship, and Sharma.

Mumbai lost overnight unbeaten batsman and debutant Hiken Shah to the first ball of the morning, but thereafter sent the visitors on a virtual leather hunt.

At stumps, Vinayak Samant (41) and Nilesh Kulkarni (9) were at the crease after having put on an unbroken stand of 33 runs for the ninth wicket.

Barring a dramatic turn-around on a wicket that is already affording copious turn and bounce, Rajasthan face a huge defeat.

Muzumdar and Sharma got together and put on 91 runs before the latter, when on 41, felt back spasms after hitting a six, and retired to the pavilion.

But there was no let-off for Rajasthan as Muzumdar and the flamboyant Nair flayed their attack by adding 143 runs with the latter clouting 12 fours and 2 sixes in his 91-ball knock before once again missing out on a century.

The left-hander had fallen for 97 in Mumbai's previous match against Gujarat.

The three batsmen -- Muzumdar, Sharma and Nair -- together added 234 runs for the fourth wicket to virtually bury Rajasthan's hopes of bouncing back in the match.

Nair's departure at 327 was followed by Muzumdar's dismissal at 354, caught at short extra cover off Aslam after he had stayed at the crease for just over five-and-a-quarter hours and hit 14 fours in his 212-ball innings.

Sharma, who retired to the dressing room when the score was 184 for three, resumed his innings at Muzumdar's dismissal and duly completed his half century with a runner.

The right-hander, who has played for India 'A', was eighth out at 431 after facing 125 balls and striking 5 fours and three sixes during his 167-minute knock. He was caught while trying to clear long on.

Ajit Agarkar and Ramesh Powar made quick 20s and departed before Sharma, but Mumbai chose to continue their innings and were rewarded when Samant continued to dominate the

tired-looking attack with Kulkarni for company.


Rajasthan (1st innings): 155

Mumbai (1st innings): (overnight 93-2):
S Kukreja lbw Mathur 30
V Mane c Pankaj Singh b Afroz Khan 20
Hiken Shah c Mathur b Aslam 26
A Muzumdar c Jadeja b Aslam 117
R Sharma c Kohda b Aslam 72
A Nair c Khoda b Afroz Khan 86
A Agarkar lbw Aslam 20
R Powar c Solanki b Aslam 28
V Samant batting 41
N Kulkarni batting 9
Extras: (b 1, lb 10, nb 4) 15
Total: (for 8 wkts, in 131 overs) 464

Fall of wickets: 1-45, 2-61, 3-93, 4-327, 5-354, 6-354, 7-390, 8-431

Bowling: Pankaj Singh 20-4-56-0, Mathur 18-6-41-1, Aslam 39-7-132-5, Kanwat 27-3-110-0, Afroz 16-2-73-2, Jadeja 8-1-25-0, Gehlot 3-0-16-0.

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