Ranji Trophy 2019-20: Railways struggles on rain-hit day two against Karnataka

Damp outfield due to incessant rain delayed the play on day two as Arindam Ghosh kept the Railways going with a gritty unbeaten fifty against Karnataka.

Railways captain Arindam Ghosh (50 batting) during day two of the match against Karnataka on Tuesday.   -  shiv kumar pushpakar

Drizzle, sunshine, drizzle. Covers on, covers off. Firewood on the pitch, super-sopper on the outfield. Several false hopes before the teams finally decided to take the field at 3pm. That, in essence, was the second day’s story in the game between Railways and Karnataka here on Tuesday.

Less than two hours’ play was possible with Railways adding 62 runs to its overnight score of 98 for six to end the day on 160 for seven in 72 overs. Arindam Ghosh was batting on 50 and Amit Mishra on 10 at stumps.

Overnight rains had ensured there would be less than optimum play on Day Two. Shoddy covers did not help, with large patches of wetness on the pitch the ground staff desperately tried to dry off. The teams arrived only at 1 pm but by noon, a fresh spell of drizzle added to doubts of any play taking place.

Match referee Sanjay Verma was the busiest person around at the Karnail Singh Stadium, overseeing work in the middle and hoping to ensure there would be some action. He finally succeeded when captains Karun Nair and Ghosh agreed to take the field despite a dodgy outfield that had sawdust spread around in patches.

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Once it did start, however, the game continued from where it was let off on Monday. Karnataka seamers probed with their line, looking for an outside edge as Ghosh and Avinash Yadav continuing the team’s resistance. Overnight 98 for six in 49 overs, the duo sped up the scoring, added 93 runs in 15.3 overs with Yadav taking charge.

He drove through the gaps and pulled over the in-field, getting to his first half-century this season with a top-edge over the keeper off a short ball from Prateek Jain in the 61st over. Ronit More finally broke the partnership, Yadav caught at gully for 62.

Ghosh, surviving a bowled off a no-ball by Abhimanyu Mithun early on, continued to defend, finally getting to his 50 with a cut to third man in 153 balls before bad light brought an end to the day's play.

-Day two at Dharamsala washed out-

Mumbai’s hopes of an outright win suffered a big dent as incessant rain on Tuesday meant the second day’s play of its Ranji Trophy Group B tie against Himachal Pradesh was washed out. Umpires S. Ravi and Vineet Kulkarni called the play off at lunch.

With the weather forecast not looking promising for Wednesday, the teams will be keeping their fingers crossed for some action. If and when there’s a resumption, it is safe to assume that Mumbai will declare at its 372 for five and try and put HP under pressure in quest of the innings lead.

(Inputs from Amol Kharhadkar)


Railways-1st innings: Mrunal Devdhar lbw b Jain 12, Ashish Sehrawat c Sharath b Mithun 0, Saurabh Singh b Jain 7, Arindam Ghosh batting 50, Mahesh Rawat b Jain 0, Dinesh Mor b Jain 4, Harsh Tyagi c Sharath b Mithun 9, Avinash Yadav c Padikkal b More 62, Amit Mishra batting 10; Extras (b-1, lb-2, nb-3) 6; Total (for 7 wickets in 72 overs) 160.

Fall of Wickets: 1-5, 2-20, 3-23, 4-23, 5-29, 6-45, 7-142

Karnataka bowling: Abhimanyu Mithun 13-5-38-2, Prateek Jain 19-8-29-4, Ronit More 11-4-21-1, Krishnappa Gowtham 20-7-39-0, Shreyas Gopal 9-0-30-0.

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