Mumbai relied on its traditional batting strength to stifle a resurgent Railways on the first day of the Ranji Trophy Elite Group A match at the Karnail Singh Stadium here on Thursday. Recovering from 98 for three, Mumbai hit back through Suryakumar Yadav and Siddhesh Lad to post 278 for five when bad light stopped play after 80 overs.
Read: As it happened
There was a layer of thin smog, which prompted Lad to wear a mask. But he saw the ball clearly, as did Yadav, and their fluent strokeplay stopped Railways from running away with the day’s honours. Yadav’s 83 and Lad’s unbeaten 80 reflected the Mumbai’s resolve after the team had decided to bat.
There was a performer in the Railways camp too – Anureet Singh, the spirited seamer who bowled his heart out after starting with a 10-over spell which set the trend for the day. He removed openers Jay Bista and Akhil Herwadkar in that impressive spell before Yadav and Lad took over the stage. Left-arm spinner Avinash Yadav claimed two wickets to play his role well.
Yadav and Lad complemented each other. Their 129-run partnership was the brightest phase of the day for Mumbai which was well served by Yadav (144b, 5x4, 1x6) and Lad (165b, 11x4), who had a keen spectator in the stands – Dinesh (father), who is here as an observer for the match.
Anureet admitted the morning session would be crucial for them on Friday. “We could have done better. A wicket or two more would have been good. With second fast bowler more of an all-rounder, I knew I had to take responsibility of bowling long spells. I was ready to do that, I have done that in the past too. I had been sounded that I would have to bear the brunt of bowling and I was prepared,” he said.
Yadav felt, “We had played lot of white ball cricket and obviously there was lack of red-ball practice. I play to the situation and we concentrated on a partnership. Lad brings lot of confidence to the middle. I have always enjoyed batting with him because we have a good understanding between us.”
Mumbai 298 for five in 80 overs (Suryakumar Yadav 83, Siddhesh Lad 80 batting, Anureet Singh three for 55) v Railways.
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