Cheteshwar Pujara and Arpit Vasavada gave a masterclass in defensive batting with a 5-hour partnership on day two, taking Saurashtra to a powerful place of their Ranji Trophy last towards Bengal right here on Tuesday. Their 142-run stand off 380 balls wore down the opposition who had a slight edge after lowering Saurashtra to 206 for 5 on the opening day.
Pujara (66 off 237), who was on 5 when he retired harm on day one attributable to fever, and Vasavada (106 off 287) batted for two classes and 5 overs because the hosts reached 384 for eight on the shut of play. On day two, the hosts managed 178 runs in 79.1 overs for the lack of three wickets.
Speedster Mukesh Kumar eliminated Pujara and Chirag Jani within the last session however by then the harm had already been achieved. Bengal took their first wicket of the day within the fifth over after tea with Wriddhiman Saha effecting a pointy stumping off Shahbaz Ahmed to ship again Vasavada.
Bengal coach Arun Lal had rated the pitch as “very poor” on Monday with the odd ball retaining low however their tempo assault couldn’t make a lot use of the circumstances after Akash Deep struck thrice on day one.
Run scoring certainly was tough however Pujara and Vasavada’s plans have been crystal clear: tire the bowlers out and pounce on the unfastened balls. Their keep within the center might not have been pleasing to the attention however proved to be very efficient.
While it was a typical Pujara knock, filled with endurance, Vasavada, who’s coached by the India batsman’s father Arvind Pujara, made a much bigger contribution to the group’s trigger with a again-to-again hundred and fourth of the season.
Vasavada, who had made a match-profitable knock towards Gujarat within the semi-last, performed with outstanding endurance and composure. His innings comprised 11 fours. This was Vasavada’s eighth first-class hundred.
It was a commendable effort from Pujara too, contemplating that he had not been retaining nicely ever since his return from New Zealand final week.
Such was the sluggish tempo of the Pujara-Vasavada stand that the primary boundary of the bat got here within the 15th over of the day when Vasavada pulled Akash Deep.
Bengal, who had bowled 80.5 overs on day one, took the brand new ball after the 85th over however it didn’t result in a breakthrough.
Vasavada introduced his fifty with a 4 off off-spinner Arnab Nandi, driving him previous mid-on. Pujara broke the shackles within the following over by stepping out to cowl-drive left-arm spinner Ahmed. Soon after, the Test specialist survived an lbw enchantment after Bengal went for the restricted DRS.
The closest Bengal got here to getting a wicket within the afternoon session was when Vasavada straight-drove Mukesh, who claimed the ball kissed his hand earlier than hitting the stumps with Pujara on the non-striker’s finish. However, the enchantment was turned down as there was no conclusive proof.
The left-handed Vasavada reached three figures 20 minutes earlier than the tea break as he lower one off Nandi by cowl, resulting in an intense celebration. The complete dressing room applauded his worthwhile effort for which he additionally received a hug from Pujara.
Pujara, who collected 5 boundaries, received his half-century off 191 balls on the stroke of tea. In the morning and afternoon session mixed, Saurashtra scored 133 runs in 58.1 overs. Pujara’s greatest shot of the day got here when he caressed one off Akash Deep between cowl and level.
Saurashtra batsman Vishvaraj Jadeja, who scored a half-century on day one, had hoped for 100-150 runs on day two. The residence group received greater than that.