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The Hindu
The Hindu
Y. B. Sarangi

Bengal hopes to give captain Tiwary a befitting farewell


Bengal will be keen to give its captain Manoj Tiwary a befitting farewell and finish a forgettable season on a positive note in its last Ranji Trophy Group-B engagement against Bihar starting at the Eden Gardens here on Friday.

Bengal, placed sixth with 12 points from one win, two defeats and three draws, was out of the knockouts race after its consecutive losses to Mumbai and Kerala. It will aim at securing a morale-boosting outright win.

Abhimanyu Easwaran, Anustup Majumdar and Tiwary, who completed 10,000 First Class runs this season, will be among the key batters for the home side.

The return of seamer Mukesh Kumar, who was released from the Indian team to play domestic cricket, will be an advantage for the hosts as he will combine with an in-form Suraj Jaiswal and Mohammad Kaif in the pace department.

All-rounder Shahbaz Ahmed will provide balance to the side.

“Our main aim is to finish the campaign with a victory. No doubt, it will be an emotional match for me, but I don’t want the focus to be entirely on me,” said Tiwary, who led the side to the final in the previous season.

The bottom-ranked Bihar, which has five points from three losses and as many draws, will also look to sign off the season with a heartwarming result.

Sakibul Gani and Bipin Kumar Saurabh are the leading run-getters this season, while medium pacer Veer Pratap Singh is the top-wicket-taker for Bihar.

The visitors need to raise their game to stop Bengal at its home.

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