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Ranji Trophy 2019-20, SF: Day 1 Wrap

Gujarat-Saurashtra’s seesaw battle, Majumdar’s recovery act highlight the opening day.

By Ameya Tilak in

Bengal right-hander Anustup Majumdar’s recovery act against Karnataka and Gujarat limiting Saurashtra to 217/5 highlighted the opening day of the Ranji Trophy 2019-20 semifinals on Saturday.

Here’s how the first day’s play panned out:

After scoring a ton in the quarterfinal, Majumdar engineered yet another comeback for Bengal, who after being reduced to 67/6, ended the opening day at 275/9 against Karnataka.

Electing to bowl, Karnataka ran through the Bengal top order as Abhimanyu Mithun, Ronit More, K Gowtham and M Prasidh Krishna shared the spoils at the Eden Gardens.

However, Majumdar and Shahbaz Ahmed, who had scored twin fifties in the quarterfinal against Odisha, joined hands, adding 72 runs together before Abhimanyu Mithun broke the partnership, dismissing Ahmed for 35.

But Bengal continued their fightback as Akash Deep and Majumdar put up 103-run stand to push their side past 240, with the former scoring 44 off 72 balls, hitting 3 sixes and as many fours.

Majumdar, meanwhile, went on to complete his hundred in and remained unbeaten on 120.

At the Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Rajkot, it was a seesaw battle between the Parthiv Patel-led Gujarat and Jaydev Unadkat’s Saurashtra.

Kishan Parmar and Harvik Desai put up a 62-run stand before the former, after enjoying his share of luck earlier in the day, got out for 37 off Axar Patel’s bowling.

Desai and Avi Barot then added 40 runs together. But the two fell in the space of four balls for 35 and 27 respectively.

Jackson and Vishvarajsinh Jadeja then put up a 60-run stand. However, Gujarat left-arm Arzan Nagwaswalla struck on two successive deliveries, dismissing Jadeja and Arpit Vasavada. Chirag Jani, though, denied Nagwaswalla a hat-trick.

Jackson, who completed a half-century and remained not out on 69, then stitched an unbeaten 55-run stand with Jani.

While Nagwaswalla picked up three wickets, Axar scalped two for Gujarat.