Ranji Trophy 2018-19: Madhya Pradesh puts Kerala on the mat

The host team sinks further with a shoddy batting display on the second day.

Yash Dubey plays a shot during Madhya Pradesh's Ranji Trophy fixture against Kerala in Thiruvananthapuram on Thursday.   -  Special Arrangement

It is almost all over for Kerala, as the home side found itself sinking further with a shoddy batting display. The second day’s play in the Ranji Trophy Elite Pool-B match proved to be no different from the first day as the host failed to measure up, leaving Madhya Pradesh on the verge of victory.

Madhya Pradesh, resuming its first innings at 161 for two on Thursday, progressed cautiously to build up a massive 265-run lead before the home side was reduced to 38 for four in its second essay. At stumps, it was still trailing by 227 runs.

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The early success — picking up the wickets of Rajat Patidar and Shubham Sharma — was a great promise for the home side looking to stage a comeback.

However, that was not to be as Madhya Pradesh skipper Naman Ojha and Yash Dubey added 70 runs for the fourth wicket.

Ojha fell for 79 soon after lunch, but Dubey (79) continued to solider on and ensured that the team crossed the 300-mark. Eventually, MP was all out for 328 as Jalaj Saxena finished with four wickets.

READ: As it happened

The manner in which Ojha and Dubey progressed should have been a lesson to the Kerala players on how to survive.

However, it was almost a repeat of the first innings as wickets fell like nine pins and Kerala was soon reduced to eight for four before Sachin Baby and V.A. Jagadeesh did some damage control with a 30-run unbroken partnership for the fifth wicket. Bad light then brought and early end to the day’s play.

Cricket, as they say, is a game of glorious uncertainties and with two full days remaining, Kerala will hope for a miracle to last the distance.

The scores

Kerala first innings 63

Madhya Pradesh first innings: Aryaman Vikram Birla lbw b Jalaj 25, Mohnish Mishra lbw b Warrier 2, Rajat Patidar c Sanju b Warrier 73, Naman Ojha c Sachin b Akshay 79, Shubham Sharma (run out) 0, Yash Dubey c Sachin b Jalaj 79, Saransh Jain c Arun b Thampi 7, Mihir Hirwani c Arun b Thampi 0, Kumar Kartikeya Singh c (sub) Vinoop b Jalaj 12, Kuldeep Sen c (sub) Rahul b Jalaj 3, Avesh Khan (not out) 14.

Extras: (nb-1, w-1, b-22, lb-6, pen-5) 35.

Total: (all out, 120 overs) 328.

Fall of wickets: 1-10, 2-57, 3-173, 4-173, 5-243, 6-258, 7-268, 8-308, 9-313.

Bowling: Warrier 29-15-28-2, Thampi 20-4-61-2, Jalaj 40-7-120-4, Chandran 13-3-24-0, Akshay 18-0-62-1.

Kerala second innings: K.B. Arun Karthick b Kuldeep 4, Jalaj Saxena lbw b Avesh 1, Rohan Prem lbw b Kuldeep 0, Akshay Chandran c Ojha b Avesh 2, Sachin Baby (batting) 20, V.A. Jagadeesh (batting) 9.

Extras: (lb-2) 2.

Total: (for four wickets, 12 overs) 38.

Fall of wickets: 1-4, 2-4, 3-7, 4-8.

Bowling: Kuldeep 5-3-11-2, Avesh 4-2-10-2, Mihir 2-0-15-0, Saransh 1-1-0-0.