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The Hindu
The Hindu
M.R. Praveen Chandran

Ranji Trophy | Ankit and Juyal combine to shut out Kerala

Uttar Pradesh showcased its myriad strengths to shut out Kerala from the contest on the third day of the Ranji Trophy cricket match at the SD College ground here on Sunday.

The near-perfect day for visitors was orchestrated by Ankit Rajpoot’s fiery opening spell in the morning which brought a swift end to Kerala innings and gave Uttar Pradesh the lead of 59 runs. Skipper Aryan Juyal’s well paced century (115 batting) and his 130-run unbroken second wicket stand with Priyam Garg (49 batting) saw Uttar Pradesh end the day at 219 for one and with an overall lead of 278.

The Kerala bowling was unthreatening on a pitch which had shed off the spitefulness it displayed in the opening hour. The openers Samarth Singh and Juyal played without any alarms to add 89 runs for the first wicket. Jalaj Saxena gave Kerala a brief lift by trapping Samarth (43) in front.

Setting the tone: Skipper Aryan Juyal led from the front to pile on Kerala’s misery with a hundred. (Source: Special Arrangement)

However, after Samarth’s dismissal, Juyal quickly changed from a careful accumulator to an enforcer. He showed intent by lofting Jalaj over long-on for a towering six to bring up his fifty, and then played at frantic pace, flaying the Kerala bowling to reach his second First Class hundred. Priyam Garg also came out of his defensive shell to put the Kerala attack to sword in the last session.

Earlier, Rajpoot used his broad shoulders to extract steep bounce and blew away Kerala with sustained hostility. The lanky bowler struck in the first over as Shreyas Gopal (36) poked at an outswinger and was caught by Shubham Kumar in the slips.

Jalaj’s (7) half-hearted pull ended in the hands of Shubham at the square leg fence while Basil Thampi (2) was beaten by pace and trapped in front. M.D. Nidheesh used the big handle to strike Shubham for two fours and a six for some welcome runs but Rajpoot returned to bowl Vaiskh Chandran (5) through the gate to give his side a handy lead.

The scores: Uttar Pradesh — 1st innings: 302

Kerala — 1st innings: Krishna Prasad c Aksh Deep b Rajpoot 0, Rohan S. Kunnummal lbw b Saurabh 11, Rohan Prem bt Kuldeep 14, Sachin Baby c Saurabh b Kuldeep 38, Vishnu Vinod c Aksh Deep b Kuldeep 75, Shreyas Gopal c Saurabh b Rajpoot 36, Sanju Samson c Jurel b Yash Dayal 35, Jalaj Saxena c Saurabh b Rajpoot 7, Basil Thampi lbw b Rajpoot 2, Vaisakh Chandran b Rajpoot 5, M.D. Nidheesh not out 15, Extras (b-3, 1b-1, nb-2): 6; Total (for five wkts in 65 overs): 220.

Fall of wickets: 1-0, 2-19, 3-32, 4-131, 5-144, 6-201. 7-220, 8-221, 9-226.

Uttar Pradesh bowling: Rajpoot 19-6-64-5, Yash Dayal 17-4-27-1, Saurabh 19-4-80-1, Kuldeep 19-1-68-3.

Uttar Pradesh — 2nd innings: Aryan Juyal (batting) 115, Samarth Singh lbw b Jalaj 43, Priyam Garg (batting) 49; Extras (b-7, lb-5): 12; Total (for one wkt in 62 overs): 219.

Fall of wickets: 1-89.

Kerala bowling: Nidheesh 15-2-47-0, Jalaj 18-5-52-1, Thampi 9-2-22-0, Vaisakh 9-0-42-0, Shreyas 9-0-38-0.

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