Aparajith, Badri put TN on top Vs Karnataka

Published: 10th November 2012 11:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 10th November 2012 11:39 AM   |  A+A-


Sensible batting by the top-order on the opening day put Tamil Nadu in control ag­­ainst Karnataka in the Gr­o­up B Ranji Trophy tie at MA Chidambaram Stadium here on Friday.

Opting to bat, TN got off to an excellent start with opene­rs Abhinav Mukund and KB Ar­­un Karthick forging a good partnership. Later Baba Apa­­r­ajith (85 batting) and S Ba­d­r­inath (61 batting) continued in the same vein to take the L B­alaji-led side to a comforta­b­le 260 for 2 at stumps.

Abhinav and Karthick pl­a­yed with lot of understanding and saw through Karnataka’s experienced new ball pair of Vin­ay Kumar and Abimanyu Mi­­­­thun with panache.

Abhinav was solid and loo­­k­ed in control. Karthick, who ca­me in for Murali Vijay lo­­o­k­ed ru­sty but  played a perfect fo­il to Abhinav. The duo pl­a­y­ed on the merit of the ball. Th­eir approach was simple— no­t to chase every ball and pl­­ay to their strength. This approach paid dividends as the sc­oreboard started to tick at at a steady pace.

Vinay and Mithun bowled in the corridor but the TN ba­­t­smen negotiated them well. Vi­­nay and Mithun failed to get th­e ball to do that ‘extra’ bit to su­rprise the openers and did no­t get any purchase from the pit­ch.

Stuart Binny erred in length and both Abhinav and Arun we­­re harsh on him. “I am ha­ppy with our boys show. It is th­­e right start that we were lo­oking for and the youngsters p­ut up a brilliant show,’’ was Ba­laji’s reaction after the day’s pl­­ay.

After the openers had ra­­i­s­e­d 106 for the first wicket, Ka­r­thick (50) was deceived by ch­ange of pace and fell leg be­f­ore to Ganesh Satish.

After lunch, Abhinav too lo­st concentration and fell to of­fie Sunil Raju with Gautham be­hind the stumps making no m­i­stake of the prize offering.

Karnataka bowlers were lu­­c­kless with Aparajith and Ba­d­rinath capitalising on the strong foundation laid by the op­eners.

Aparajith, promoted to one drop did not disappoint his ca­ptain and came out with a splendid display.

Playing only in his second se­­ason in Ranji, the India U­nder-19 World Cup-winning pl­ayer showed lot of maturity an­d complemented Badrinath w­ell. At one time, Aparajith and Badrinath were neck and ne­­ck before reaching fifty but Ap­arajith raced past Badri an­d was closing on his hund­r­ed when play ended.

Aparajith’s square drive off Ar­un Kumar where the ball raced past the close in fielders to the fence was the result of pe­rfect timing backed by right footwork.

“Aparajith’s effort was the hi­­ghlight of the day. His effort was splendid and I hope he co­ntinues in the same vein on Sa­turday and takes his game to­ the next level,’’ Ba­l­­a­­ji said.

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