Srinagar, March 05: After bowlers failed to get rid of Railways’ tail, J&K batsmen also failed to show application and intent as Railways after gaining a sizeable 1st innings lead of 167 runs were in sight of a big victory in the ongoing Ranji Trophy Elite Group-C match at IIT Chemplast, Chennai.
Earlier, resuming from an overnight score of 297/8, the unbeaten tailenders- Yuvraj and Akash Pandey played sensibly and mixed aggression with defence to guide their side to a healthy total of 426 runs, thus gaining a decisive lead of 167 runs, making a partnership of 132 runs for the 9th wicket.
Yuvraj was more agressive and scored a magnificent century (103) off 133 balls, studded with 10 fours and 3 sixes, while Akash Pandey contributed 43 runs off 127 balls with 6 fours. Earlier, opener Pratham Singh and middle-order batsman Shivam Chaudhary had scored 75 and 47 runs respectively.
J&K bowlers showed dismal performance today as the duo of Railways tailenders Yuvraj and Akash frustrated them and J&K bowlers had to struggle for around three and a half hours to get rid of them. Almost all the bowlers bowled poorly today and failed to hit good areas.
Abid Mushtaq was the pick of the bowlers, but he could not add to his overnight tally of 5 wickets, conceding 95 runs in his 31 overs, while Aquib Nabi claimed 2 wickets. Parvez Rasool and Umar Nazir shared one wicket each.
After conceding a huge first innings lead of 167 runs, J&K were struggling in the second essay at 145/6, still trailing by 22 runs. Skipper Ian Dev Singh Chauhan was unbeaten on sedate 22 runs off 76 balls, with 2 boundaries, while Auqib Nabi was at the crease on one at the draw of stumps today.
Opener Suryansh Raina was the top scorer with 39 runs off 84 balls, studded with 4 fours and one six, while wicketkeeper Fazil Rashid and promising Abdul Samad contributed 29 runs each. Qamran Iqbal also chipped in with 15 runs off 19 balls with 3 boundaries.
For Railways, Shivam Chaudhary was the pick of the bowlers, who took 3 important wickets by conceding 27 runs in his 7 overs, while Karn Sharma bagged 2 wickets by giving away 38 runs in 15 overs. R Sharma also claimed one wicket.
With last day’s play left tomorrow, J&K are still trailing by 22 runs, while Railways need just 4 wickets for scripting a win by an innings or chase a paltry total. However, cricket being a game of glorious uncertainties, predicting a result before it happens, is always a foolish thing to do.