Ishan Porel made a superb comeback to the Bengal side after overcoming a bout of chicken pox to take five wickets and help the host bundle out Uttar Pradesh for 198 in the first innings of the Ranji Trophy season opener at the Eden Gardens here on Tuesday.
Even though Bengal restricted Uttar Pradesh to a modest total after electing to field, it found itself in a spot bother at 29 for four at the draw of Stumps on the opening day.
Bengal seamers bowled good lines and made early inroads. Porel, who missed the white-ball tournaments due to health issues, stood out for bowling with control over the moving ball.
Pritam Chakraborty scalped Aanjaneya Suryavanshi and Porel removed Madhav Kaushik even before Uttar Pradesh could open its account.
Porel breached rival captain Karan Sharma’s defence as Uttar Pradesh struggled at 26 for three.
Priyam Garg (53, 105b, 7x4), who found gaps on both sides to exhibit some handsome shots, and Rinku Singh (79, 118b, 11x4) applied themselves to add 89 runs for the fourth wicket and steady the boat. They began patiently before accelerating the scoring rate in the post-lunch session when conditions improved for batting.
Porel returned to break the stand by having Garg caught behind brilliantly by his brother Abishek and trapped Akshdeep Nath in front in quick succession.
Porel got his fourth five-wicket haul by having wicketkeeper-batter Aaradhya Yadav caught in the slips.
Rinku, who played some cracking shots on the off-side, held one end before being caught by Akash Deep off Chakraborty.
Bengal’s reply was disastrous as Shivam Mavi and Ankit Rajpoot bowled excellent lengths and got good purchase.
Mavi scalped opener Koushik Ghosh and Sudip Gharami in the second over, while Rajpoot castled Anustup Majumdar in the fifth. Mavi delivered another blow by accounting for opener Abhishek Das.
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