Sunday, October 23, 2016

Ranji Trophy 16-17: Jharkhand vs Rajasthan

Match Summary: Jharkhand (209 & 277) beat Rajasthan (207 & 237) by 42 runs 
Points: Jharkhand 6, Rajasthan 0

Second outright win of the season propelled Jharkhand to the top of Group B and in pole position for one of the knock-out berths.

Jharkhand won the toss and were all out for 209 with Kaushal Singh adding a fifty his century in the first game. Other batsmen got starts but no one capitalized on it with Pankaj Singh taking 5 wicket. Rajasthan had a great start with the openers putting on a 100 partnership but then Shahbaz Nadeem had other ideas as he ran through the Rajasthan line up and Jharkhand got a slender 2 run lead. In the second innings Jharkhand were in trouble with 7 wickets down for 163 before Ishank Jaggi and Nadeem put up a 99 run stand for the 8th wicket. Jaggi went on to get a round 100 as Jharkhand were all out for 277. Nadeem was once again amongst the wickets as Rajasthan lost 8 wickets for 137 in the chase. However, then came an irritating 87 run 9th wicket stand. But Jharkhand were finally able to break through and register a well deserved win.

In the end it was a fighting win as the team kept fighting hard and did not give up.

  • Team Changes: In - Ajay Yadav, Sunny Gupta, Pratyush Singh. Out - Varun Aaron, Shiv Gautam, Samar Quadri. 
  • Saurabh Tiwary lead the side in place of Aaron.
  • Pratyush Singh made his first class debut. Decent outing having got starts in both innings but couldn't capitalize on it.
  • 12th First Class century for Ishank Jaggi.
  • 2nd 10-wicket match haul for Nadeem which included his 10th & 11th 5-wicket hauls. Nadeem picked up the Man of the Match award.
Season Stats
Top Scorer: Kaushal Singh 193 @48.25
Most Wickets: Shahbaz Nadeem 18 @27.06
Player Count: 14

Points Tally - 13 after 3 games. Right at the top of the table. Meanwhile Rajasthan drop down to 4th place.

Coming Up Next - Vidarbha, who are currently at 7th place in the Group but have played one game less.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Arbit Stats #58: Big Gaps

Test Match #2225: Bangladesh vs England
It could turn out to an extra-ordinary one or it could be just another Test but for one player, this game is special.

Gareth Batty returns to the England Test side after having missed 142 Test matches in between over a period of 11 years. And in the process breaking compatriot Martin Bicknell's 124 game missing streak by a whopping 28 Tests. (Full list)

Lets hope he gets a better run this time around.

P.S. Wondering how would the likes of Kepler Wessels (who played for Australia and South Africa be accommodated in such lists)

Monday, October 17, 2016

Ranji Trophy 16-17: Jharkhand vs Karnataka

Match Summary: Karnataka (577/6d & 162/3) drew with Jharkhand (374)
Points: Karnataka 3, Jharkhand 1

The kind of game where one team decided that it doesn't want to win. Otherwise there is no obvious reason for Karnataka not enforcing the follow-on on the last morning and giving themselves a shot at earning 3/4 additional points.

Karnataka batted first and rode Samarth's double hundred to overcome an initial wobble and pile on a big score. Jharkhand were in trouble but managed to extend their first innings just enough to ensure that Karnataka did not enforce the follow-on. Ishan Kishan played a blistering innings to spare Jharkhand the blushes and secure one point from the game.

  • Team Changes: In - Samar Quadri. Out - Ajay Yadav.
  • 2nd first class century & career best score for Ishan Kishan. Comparisons with another Jharkhand keeper will become a norm if such performances continue. 
Season Stats
Top Scorer: Ishan Kishan 163 @81.50
Most Wickets: Ashish Kumar 9 @19.78 

Points Tally - 7 after 2 games. Currently lying in 4th place in the group, well in hunt for a knock-out berth.

Coming Up Next - Rajasthan, who are currently at the top in the Group.

Swapnil Gugale & Ankit Bawne put on an unbeaten 594 stand before Gugale declared, leaving themselves just 30 short of the highest partnership record in first class cricket. Apparently they were not aware of the record! Although not similar but reminds of the BB Nimbhalkar's first class epic where he missed out on the highest  first-class score at the time because the opposing Kathiawar team refused to take the field anymore!!!

Coming back to the game, even this huge score almost did not prove enough because young Risabh Pant hammered a triple hundred at near run-a-ball but Delhi just fell short.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Ranji Trophy 16-17: Jharkhand vs Maharashtra

Match Summary: Maharashtra (210 & 188) lost to Jharkhand (306 & 93/4) by 6 wickets
Points: Maharashtra 0, Jharkhand 6

A good start to the new season for team Jharkhand. Probably the exposure in the pre-season Buchi Babu tournament helped the team a lot. Maybe its time for Jharkhand to start their own pres-season invitational tournament.

Maharashtra batted first but didn't score much as they found the pace of Varun Aaron too much to handle. Kedar Jadhav and Ankit Bawne got 50s and stitched a century stand but there was not much else to follow. In response, Jharkhand were in trouble with half the side back in pavilion with only 106 on board. But the tail had other ideas as they built small partnerships to stretch the score past 300 and take a healthy 96 run lead. The bowlers once again combined to restrict Maharashtra to 188 with Kedar Jadhav again scoring a fifty. Jharkhand had a wobbly start in their chase of 93 as both openers got out for ducks, before Virat Singh anchored the chase to set up a 6 wicket victory.

  • 19 year old Kaushal Singh's maiden first class century.
  • Saurabh Tiwary reaching the 5000 run mark in first class cricket.
  • 250 first-class wickets for Shahbaz Nadeem.

Season Stats
Top Scorer: Kaushal Singh 130 @130
Most Wickets: Ashish Kumar 6 @12.67 

Points Tally - 6 after 1 game. Currently lying in 2nd place in the group.

Coming Up Next - Domestic powerhouse Karnataka, who did not play in the first round of the season.

P.S - Congratulations to Chhattisgarh on winning their maiden Ranji game. Hopefully this performance will open up the path for teams like Bihar to enter the Ranji fold.

P.P.S. - This is the 400th post on this blog.