Seventeen wickets fell for just 228 runs as Mumbai took full control of its Ranji Trophy Group C encounter against Odisha. At the end of the day, despite losing three wickets in its second essay, Mumbai was sitting pretty with a consolidated lead of 202 runs.
Considering the fact that the KIIT Stadium pitch is tilting in favour of the batsmen as the game has progressed, it would be a gargantuan task for Odisha to stage a comeback and keep its campaign alive.
The Odisha bowlers started the day on a promising note, conceding just 25 runs to earn the remaining four Mumbai wickets. It was due to a mix of tight bowling with the new ball by Basant Mohanty and Suryakant Pradhan, and skipper Govinda Poddar's brilliance in the field as he hit the target on the run from covers to leave Dhawal Kulkarni short of his crease.
READ: Day 1 report
Moments later, however, Kulkarni was back with a bang along with Shardul Thakur to spell doom into Odisha's batting order. He forced opener Sandeep Pattanaik to fiddle with one in the perfect corridor straight to Suryakumar Yadav in the slips. Thakur then struck with his first two balls, first beating Natraj Behera with pace and bounce and following up with Subhranshu Senapati's wicket off the next ball, getting Akhil Herwadkar into action in the cordon.
LIVE BLOG: Ranji Trophy - Round 4, Day 2
At zero for three, debutant Shantanu Mishra saved the hat-trick ball. At the other end, Poddar opened his team's account with a push through covers for two runs off Kulkarni. However, Kulkarni got Poddar to nick one in the third over for Herwadkar to complete his third catch, although the ball lobbed from Siddhesh Lad's hands at third slip. At two for four, Odisha was well and truly out of the game.
All-rounder Biplab Samantray then staged a recovery of sorts along with Mishra to get Odisha back in the game. The 93-run association saw both the batsmen hitting crisp drives and flicks off all the four Mumbai pacers. Immediately after the drinks break after lunch, Vijay Gohil's spin was introduced and the left-arm spinner struck twice his first two overs.
After getting a life from Ajinkya Rahane at gully, Deepak Behera hit a few lusty blows but Abhishek Nayar wiped the tail off in no time as Samantray ran out of partners. With six Odisha batsmen having been dismissed for a duck, Samantray (72 off 129, 10x4), Mishra (36 off 95, 6x4) and Behera (28 off 62, 4x4, 1x6) were the odd men out.
Youngster Prithvi Shaw (46 off 45, 7x4) yet again appeared to be playing on another pitch as he tormented the pacers. He was especially harsh on Pradhan, scoring 28 runs off the pacer's 18 balls, including five fours thanks to a combination of flicks and a stunning cover drive.
His partner Akhil Herwadkar was run out while backing up too far as Shaw's straight drive deflected off Pradhan's fingers on to the stumps at the non-striker's end. Rahane was unlucky to have been adjudged leg-before as he seemed to have inside-edged the ball on to the pad. Shaw threw his wicket away soon after upper cutting Mohanty for a four, leaving night-watchman Kulkarni to see the day off in Yadav's company.
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