CHENNAI:Left-arm spinner DT Chandrasekar and offie Malolan Rangarajan bowled in tandem to help Tamil Nadu restrict Andhra to 203 on the first day of the Ranji Trophy Group B match at the MA Chidambaram Stadium.
Barring K Bharat and A Pradeep, none of their batsmen showed purpose to defy the Tamil Nadu spinners. The duo’s Chennai league stint came in handy.
Opting to bat bravely in overcast conditions, Andhra failed to make good use of the toss. They had a disastrous start, losing opener D Prasanth cheaply before skipper Mohammad Kaif perished for a blob. Both were consumed by medium pacer J Kousik, who exploited the conditions admirably. Prasanth was hustled by pace and bounce, edging to wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik. Kaif steered the ball, but found Kaushik Gandhi in the gully.
From then on, Bharat and Ricky Bhui did a mini rescue act. Bhui was positive, moved his feet well and was at ease against the spinners. He thrashed Malolan for a six and four off consecutive deliveries. Bharat was cool and composed, playing to the merit of the ball and not trying anything extravagant.
When the pair threatened to forge a big stand, Tamil Nadu skipper Abhinav Mukund brought in B Aparajith in the last over before lunch. He foxed Bhui with change of pace and induced an edge to twin brother Indrajith at forward short-leg.
Thereafter, Abhinav shuffled his bowlers, who struck at regular intervals. Upon reaching his half-century Bharat lost his concentration, failed to read an arm ball from Chandrasekar and was castled. But Pradeep put up a good fight. He showed patience and deftly played the spinners. His TNCA league experience too must have come in handy, as he sized up the conditions perfectly.
It was a good day’s work for Chandrasekar, who is continuing to impress in his debut season. “At first I was bowling a bit faster. Plus there was pressure as Rahil Shah was not playing. But later I bowled a bit slower and with subtle variations,’’ he explained.
Andhra (1st innings) Bharat b Chandrasekar 56, Prasanth c Karthik b Kousik 2, Kaif c Gandhi b Kousik 0, Bhui c Indrajith b Aparajith 35, Pradeep c Karthik b Malolan 78, Sreekanth c Shankar b Malolan 0, Sai Krishna c Indrajith b Chandrasekar 0, Siva Kumar lbw b Chandrasekar 3, Shankara Rao c Karthik b Malolan 0, Sudhakar (not out) 27, Shivraj lbw b Chandrasekar 0. Extras (lb 1, w 1) 2. Total (all out; 77.2 ovs) 203. Fall of wickets: 1-2, 2-2, 3-72, 4-123, 5-124, 6-125, 7-135, 8-136, 9-190. Bowling: Shankar 11-2-27-0, Kousik 4-0-11-2, Chandrasekar 21.2-5-41-4, Malolan 21-2-72-3, Srinivas 13-2-34-0, Aparajith 7-1-17-1.
Tamil Nadu (1st innings) Aparajith (batting) 0, Mukund (batting) 0. Extras 0. Total (0 wkts; 1 ovs) 0. Bowling: Shankara Rao 1-1-0-0.
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At Delhi: Maharashtra 80 in 25.4 ovs (Saini 6/32) vs Delhi 157/4 in 52 ovs (Rana 59, Shorey 54 n.o).
At Mysuru: Odisha 232 in 84.1 ovs (Poddar 153, Gopal 4/75, Suchith 3/56) vs Karnataka 16/0 in 7 ovs
At Rohtak: Haryana 140/7 in 60 ovs (Rana 56, Krishna 4/44, Goswami 3/37) vs Assam
At Valsad: Gujarat 281/4 in 85 ovs (Smit 57, Panchal 128, Juneja 50 n.o) vs Baroda
At Gwalior: Railways 256 in 82.4 ovs (Wakaskar 73, Cheluvaraj 50, Saxena 8/96) vs Madhya Pradesh 7/2 in 8 ovs
At Mumbai: Mumbai 407/4 in 88 ovs (Herwadkar 58, Iyer 137, Rohit 110 n.o, Suryakumar 58 n.o) vs Uttar Pradesh
At Dharamsala: Himachal Pradesh 352/4 in 90 ovs (Dogra 174 n.o, Gangta 93 n.o, Pathania 3/66) vs Services
At Jamshedpur: Jharkhand 304/3 in 90 ovs (Kishan 109, Anand 124) vs J&K.
At Malappuram: Kerala 223/4 in 90 ovs (Prem 94 n.o, Baby 70) vs Tripura
At Rajkot: Goa 239 in 84 ovs (Misal 106 no, Sanandiya 3/51, Jadeja 3/41) vs Saurashtra 4/0 in 1 over