CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu, who reached the Ranji Trophy semifinals last season, are in a tight spot midway through the current season. With just seven points from three games and sitting fourth in Group C behind Andhra (15 pts), Madhya Pradesh (14), Mumbai (10), they have their task cut out in the remaining matches against Odisha, Baroda and Madhya Pradesh.
“We are in a tricky situation. We need a minimum of an outright win and a first innings lead in two games to stay in hunt. I had a word with the boys and they are aware of the arduous task ahead. They are determined to give their best,’’ said S Sharath, the State selection committee chairman.
“Their focus will be on the Odisha game and I am confident that they will come out with flying colours,’’ he added. Tamil Nadu’s bowling has been a concern lately. In the home games against Andhra and Tripura, after making inroads initially with a couple of wickets, they let the opposition make a comeback, which cost them. “It is easy to criticise, but if you look at the wickets, (neutral curator) it had nothing for the spinners against Andhra.
The Tripura game was marred by inclement weather. Our bowlers did try hard, but things did not work, which is part and parcel of the game,’’ opined Sharath.
In the absence of M Vijay and R Ashwin, the side faces a challenge. Yo Mahesh feels the team is confident. “It is still too early to say how the wicket will behave in the Odisha game. But we know every game is important. We have the ability to take 20 wickets. Our plan will be to put a big score, and then put pressure and go for the wickets.’’