Fine bowling by left-arm spinner Sreekumar Nair (4/43) and medium pacer Prashanth Chandran (3/43) helped Kerala restrict Uttar Pradesh to 214 in their first innings on the opening day of the Elite 'A' Ranji trophy match in Palakkad on Thursday. At close, Kerala were 13 for no loss.
Electing to bat on what appeared to be a batting pitch, UP, who were in a strong position at one stage at 165/2, lost the initiative to some good bowling by Kerala. The visitors lost eight wickets for the addition of 49 runs. But Suresh Raina stood tall among the ruins with a fine 74 studded with eight fours.
Earlier, UP openers Rohit Prakash (26) and Jyoti Yadav (37) gave their side a good start by putting on 69 runs before Rohit was run out to a brilliant piece of fielding by Suresh Kumar. Jyoti was caught by Vipin Lal off left-arm spinner M. Suresh Kumar with UP on 89/2.
In-form Raina and Rehet Elahi (24) added 77 runs for the third wicket, before the latter edged to wicket-keeper Deepak off Sreekumar Nair. Rizwan, who came in at the fall of Elahi's wicket, did not last long.
Thereafter wickets fell at regular intervals and UP innings ended 41 minutes before close of play. Raina scored 74 (8x4, 125 balls). He was dropped by Sunil Oasis in the slips off Nair with his individual score on 64 and UP on 178/3.
Uttar Pradesh First Innings:
Rohit Prakash run out 26
Jyoti yadav c V Lal b Suresh Kumar 37
Suresh Raina c Oasis b Prashanthchandran 74
R Elahi c Deepak b Nair 24
Rizwan Shamshad c Deepak b Nair 5
Gyanendra Pandey c and b Nair 3
N Chopra c Deepak b Prashanthchandran 4
Prashant Malvia lbw b Prashanthchandran 1
Ratnesh Misra c Hemanth Kumar b Nair 6
A.W. Zaidi c Deepak b Ananthapadmanabhan 9
Aman verma not out 0
Extras (b-9, lb-4, nb-12) 25
Total (all out in 77.3 overs) 214
Fall of wkts : 1/69, 2/89, 3/166, 4/184, 5/188, 6/196, 7/197, 8/199, 9/214.
Bowling: Prashanthchandran 17-2-43-3; Sony Cheruvathor 8-0-38-0; Sreekumar Nair 24.3-9-43-4; Sunil Oasis 3-1-3-0; Ananthapadmanabhan 15-4-45-1; M Suresh Kumar 10-0-29-1.
Kerala First Innings
C M Deepak batting 8
Sujith Somasundar batting 4
Extras (lb-1) 1
Total (for no loss, 10 overs) 13
Bowling: A W Zaidi 3-0-4-0; Ratnesh Misra 2-2-0-0; Nikhil Chopra 3-1-7-0; Gyanendra Pandey 1-0-1-0; Aman Verma 1-1-0-0.