Ranji Trophy: Jharkhand aiming for outright win

Both teams have already qualified for the quarterfinals, but Jharkhand is aiming for an outright win to top the group against Odisha.

Jharkhand players on the eve of the match.

The Group B Ranji Trophy match between Jharkhand and Odisha which begins at the KCA-St.Xavier’s College ground is inconsequential as far as qualification is concerned. Both teams have already qualified for the quarterfinals, but Jharkhand is aiming for an outright win to top the group.

Captain Saurabh Tiwary revealed that his team was treating the match against Odisha with utmost importance as a win would put the team in good stead for the future campaign. Jharkhand, with 32 points, is currently behind Karnataka — who has completed its league engagements with 37 points. An outright win will enable Jharkhand to top the group and avoid stronger teams from the other group.

"This match is important for us and we will be aiming for a win as we want to top the group. We have played consistently well as a team this season. Though my form has been patchy, Ishank Jaggi and Ishan Kishan have come good with the bat and Nadeem has been consistent with the ball. We want to keep up the good work. Odisha is a good team. They have been playing in the elite group for some time. They are pretty experienced side and we are not taking them lightly. I hope there is something in the wicket to help our bowlers, " said Tiwary.

Stakes are not high for Odisha in this match. A win or defeat will not alter the team’s position — third — in the group. Debashish Mohanty and his boys are obviously thrilled having made it into the quarterfinals for the first time in 15 years. The former Indian medium pacer said that there will not be a lack of effort from his team in the match against Jharkhand.

"Qualifying for the quarterfinals is a tremendous achievement. But we are motivated enough to do well against Jharkhand. The wicket looks good and we will be playing positive cricket, " he said.

Teams:

Jharkhand: Saurab Tiwary (capt.), Ishan Kishan, Sumith Kumar, Virat Singh, Ishank Jaggi, Anand Singh, Kaushal Singh, Pratyush Singh, Ajay Yadav, Vikash Singh, Shabhaz Nadeem, Samar Quadri, Sunny Guptha and Ashish Kumar.

Odisha: Govind Poddar(capt.), Sandeep Patnaik, Abinash Saha, Ranjith Singh, Biplab Samantray, Saurabh Rawat, Subhranshu Senapatti, Bahanta Mohanty, Suryakantha Pradhan, Deepak Behera, Alok Mangaraj, Dhiraj Singh, Manoj Nayak, Anusuman Gope and Abhilash Yadav.