Ranji Trophy: Shaw century helps Mumbai recover

The home side invited the visitor to bat first on a seaming track and made inroads soon enough. Jay Bista prodded at a ball from P. Vijay Kumar, bowling his first and the side’s third over of the day, that rose from a good length as Bista paid the price.

The diminutive opener, who turned 18 a little over a week ago, scored his third century this season.   -  Kommuri Srinivas.

From 64 for three, Mumbai recovered and made a 125-run, fourth wicket partnership thanks to Prithvi Shaw’s third century this season, on the opening day of its group C Ranji Trophy match against Andhra at the C.S.R. College ground on Friday. The diminutive opener, who turned 18 a little over a week ago, stood tall as the tourists closed the day at 248 for six.

The home side invited the visitor to bat first on a seaming track and made inroads soon enough. Jay Bista prodded at a ball from P. Vijay Kumar, bowling his first and the side’s third over of the day, that rose from a good length as Bista paid the price. Second slip D.B. Prasanth safely pouched the chance.

Two balls later, Vijay had the hugely talented Shreyas Iyer in a bind, whether to play a shot or not. The ball meanwhile grazed his blade to give K.S. Bharat behind the wickets a simple catch.

Match Centre

Operating from the hill end, the seasoned paceman plied a taut line, attacking the stumps most often or the imaginary fourth or fifth wicket; Vijay’s opening spell read 6-2-13-2.

After Surya Kumar Yadav played back and snicked to stumper Bharat off Bandaru Ayyappa (three for 87), Mumbai drew strength from Shaw who with Siddhesh Lad restored stability, going to lunch at 104 for three.

Shaw grew in confidence and composure, going down on his knee to slog sweep Bhargav Bhatt over square leg for a six and leapfrog into the nineties. He then ascended to three figures with a lofted boundary over mid wicket, as did he put on over 100 with Lad for the fourth wicket shortly after.

Shaw’s vigil through two sessions waned towards the end of the latter. Rooted to the crease and sans footwork, he drove Ayyappa to short cover M. Pranith. Andhra’s new ball bowler then had Mumbai captain Aditya Tare attempting a cover drive but instead edging to Prasanth leaping low to his right to clutch the catch.

Lad, ever the utility player, shouldered the responsibility, seeing his side past 200 and to respectability with a priceless 86 from 203 balls, embellished with nine boundaries and two big ones. He, however, fell in the day’s penultimate over, caught behind off Sasikanth.

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