Off-spinner Arlen Konwar scalped three wickets to keep Assam in the hunt after hosts Kerala ended the opening day at 211 for five in their Ranji Trophy Group C match in Malappuram, on Saturday.
Konwar returned with figures of three for 49 to bring Assam back into the match after Abhishek Hegde (46) and V A Jagadeesh (40) gave Kerala a solid start, sharing 85 runs for the opening stand.
Konwar accounted for the wickets of Hegde, Rohan Prem (36) and Raiphi Gomez, while left-arm spinner Jamaluddin Syed Mohammad dismissed Sanju Samson (20) as Kerala undid all the good work of their openers, losing three wickets in six overs to slide to 158 for five from 144 for two.
But Robert Fernandez (38 not out) and Akshay Kodoth (22 not out) ensured that there was no further damage to the hosts, putting on unbeaten 58 runs for the sixth wicket.
Kerala 1st innings: 211 for five in 90 overs (Abhishek Hegde 46, V A Jagadeesh 40; Arlen Konwar 3/49) vs Assam.