Ranji Trophy: Feisty Hooda, patient Waghmode defy Mumbai

Baroda took a step forward towards dominance, finishing at 376 for the loss of four wickets — a first innings lead of 205, against Mumbai in the Ranji Trophy Group C game.

Aditya Waghmode (left) and Deepak Hooda put Baroda in a commanding position against Mumbai on the second day of their Ranji Trophy match at the Wankhede Stadium.   -  Vivek Bendre

Deepak Hooda set the tone with a rapidfire 75 (3x4, 5x6) on a day of toil for Mumbai bowlers at the Wankhede Stadium here on Friday. The slow track added to the struggle as the home team bowlers found themselves at the receiving end on the second day in the Ranji Trophy Group C game. Baroda took a step forward towards dominance, finishing at 376 for the loss of four wickets — a first innings lead of 205 at the halfway mark, and growing in confidence.

Scorecard

Batting at No. 4, the Baroda captain smashed five sixes off slow bowler Vijay Gohil and also got a life when Aditya Tare messed a stumping chance. Compact at the crease, Hooda seized the chance to showcase judgement of length and strokeplay against some big names in first-class cricket. Opener Aditya Waghmode played the anchor role and stole the show with a patient 138 off 309 balls (13 fours, one six).

Mumbai’s pacers (Dhawal Kulkarni and Shardul Thakur) and seamer Abhishek Nayar got little help from the track which was in contrast to the 11 wickets which fell on Day One. The home team batsmen chased the balls pitched on the off stump, while the wicket-keeper and close-in fielders were kept busy. Gohil’s persistence against careful batting earned him Hooda’s scalp, while change bowler Shreyas Iyer claimed century-maker Waghmode. Swapnil Singh (63 not out) is determined to deal more blows to Mumbai's morale.

Ranji Blog, Day Two

Tare set attacking fields on the second morning, in a bit to regain the initiative. The Mumbai bowlers’ exertions made no impact on the left-handed batsmen. Vishnu Solanki and Waghmode helped themselves to half-centuries before the former suffered a lapse in concentration, guiding a ball from Thakur to second slip for Suryakumar Yadav to cling on to a low left-handed reflex catch.

READ: Report, Day One

Royston Dias had limped off the attack after sending down five balls. Seamers Dhaval Kulkarni and Shardul Thakur neither gained assistance from the pitch, nor managed to hustle the batsmen the way Atit Sheth and Lukemaan Meriwala succeeded on the first day's morning session. Kulkarni made Waghmode lose his balance, moving away from a bouncer from round the wicket, a momentary triumph for bowlers on a harrowing day under the sun.

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