Karnataka and Mumbai largely stayed with each other on day two of their Elite Group-A Ranji Trophy match at the KSCA Stadium on Wednesday.
After bowling out Karnataka for 400 in its first innings, Mumbai reached 99 for two at stumps.
One drop Ashay Sardesai’s wicket, courtesy a low catch by wicket-keeper B.R. Sharath off paceman Ronit More, ushered in the close of play.
Whether it offers enough of a tail wind for the hosts to break open the contest on Thursday remains to be seen.
On a mostly unresponsive strip, much of the cricket, quite expectedly, was less than intense. However, the day’s play wasn’t without its moments; those who bent their backs got their rewards, provided the ball kept its shape.
The SG Test ball, which has found disapproval from no less a figure than the Indian captain Virat Kohli, was changed thrice during the day - in overs 111 and 113 of the Karnataka innings (new ball was taken after 84 overs late on day one) and after just three overs of the Mumbai innings.
Dhawal Kulkarni, exploiting the early morning nip, reduced Karnataka to 269 for six from an overnight 263 for four.
Both Shreyas Gopal (48,93b, 8x4) and Sharath (0, 8b) were trapped in front, the former paying the price for being indecisive and the latter done in by an incoming delivery.
While centurion K.V. Siddharth held one end up - he eventually finished on 161 (299b, 19x4, 2x6) - Abhimanyu Mithun played a pleasing knock (34 n.o., 29b, 6x4, 1x6).
But Shivam Dubey, with a fine post-lunch effort (2.4-0-9-3), cleaned up the tail to finish with figures of seven for 53.
Mumbai’s reply was led by the confident Jay Bista (69 batting, 111b,11x4), with all but one of his boundaries coming square of the wicket.
His opening partner Akhil Herwadkar however went into a shell consuming 50 deliveries for just five runs.
Late in the afternoon, Mithun bowled an inspired spell (5-1-6-1) and deserved a little more than just the scalp of Herwadkar who was out caught at fine leg following a half-hearted hook.
He saw Bista dropped by Sharath when on 34 and Mir Kaunain Abbas grass a tough chance at second slip when Sardesai was still on zero.
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