Captain Stuart Binny and wicketkeeper Muralidharen Gautam struck unbeaten centuries as Karnataka recovered from a poor start to end the first day of their last league match of the Ranji Trophy against Maharashtra on a strong position in Pune, on Saturday.
Binny and Gautam were unbeaten on 115 and 132 respectively, having put on an unbroken stand of 215 runs for the fifth wicket stand to take Karnataka to 306 for four at stumps on the opening day.
Binny and Gautam's splendid knocks helped Karnataka, who still have an outside chance to make it to the quarter-finals, recover after a few early wickets.
From 18 for two and then 91 for four just after lunch break, the visitors made a remarkable recovery to end the day on a comfortable position.
Binny was the more agressive of the duo as he hit 13 fours and two sixes in his 142-ball knock. Gautam, on the other hand, took 261 balls for his unbeaten 132, inclusive of 15 fours and a six.
Maharashtra captain Rohit Motwani's decision to field first at the Subrata Roy Sahara Stadium initially looked like paying dividends but it backfired later as Gautam and Binny denied the home side any success for most part of the second session and the whole of the final session of the day.
It was a leather-hunt for Maharashtra players after number five Karnataka batsman Ganesh Satish (6) was run out early in the second session.
For Maharashtra, Shrikant Mundhe, Sachin Chaudhari and Satyajeet Bachhav took a wicket each.
Karnataka 1st innings: 306 for four in 89 overs (Muralidharen Gautam 132 not out, Stuart Binny 115 not out).