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Kolkata, March 1, 2020
Ishan Porel and Anustup Majumdar played pivotal roles as Bengal pushed Karnataka on the backfoot while Saurashtra put up a solid show against Gujarat as the second day of the Ranji Trophy 2019-20 semi-finals came to an end.
After Majumdar's 149 led Bengal's recovery from 67/6 to 312 all out, Porel starred with the ball, scalping five wickets, as Bengal dominated the proceedings on the second day of the semifinal at the Eden Gardens.
Resuming the day's play on 275/9, Bengal added 37 runs more to their overnight score.
The Abhimanyu Easwaran-led side, then came out all guns blazing with the ball as Porel struck twice in a quick succession, dismissing R Samarth and skipper Karun Nair, and had Karnataka at 5/2.
Akash Deep and Mukesh Kumar struck on either side of the lunch as Karnataka lost K Siddharth and Manish Pandey for 14 and 12 respectively.
Devdutt Padikkal was the fifth wicket to fall before Abhishek Kumar Raman and Easwaran grabbed stunners as Bengal dismissed KL Rahul and Srinivas Sharath to reduce Karnataka to 65/7.
Karnataka managed to avoid the follow-on, courtesy a brisk 56-run stand between K Gowtham and Abhimanyu Mithun, but went on to concede a 190-run lead after being bowled out for 122. While Porel scalped five wickets, Deep and Kumar picked up three and two wickets respectively.
Karnataka needed some early wickets and Mithun provided them with the same as the right-arm medium pacer scalped three, with Bengal having 23 runs on the board in the second innings. Manoj Tiwary and Sudip Chatterjee then added 38 runs together before M Prasidh Krishna dismissed the former.
Majumdar, then, was caught in the slips, but survived after the replays showed that Ronit More had overstepped. Bengal ended the day 72/4, extending their overall lead to 262 runs.
In Rajkot, meanwhile, Sheldon Jackson and the bowlers helped Saurashtra gain advantage over Gujarat at stumps.
Jackson notched up his 19th first class hundred and guided Saurashtra to 304. For Gujarat, Arzan Nagwaswalla picked up five wickets, while Axar Patel and Roosh Kalaria got three and two wickets, respectively.
Jackson and Chirag Jani -- the overnight batsmen -- had put up a 55-run stand before the close of play on day one and added 45 runs more on the second day. However, soon after Jackson notched up a hundred, Kalaria dismissed both the batsmen - Jani and Jackson - in a space of a run.
Nagwaswalla then picked up two more wickets to complete a five-wicket haul and Axar Patel dismissed Chetan Sakariya to end Saurashtra's innings.
Skipper Jaydev Unadkat and Chetan Sakariya struck in quick succession as Gujarat lost Priyank Panchal and Samit Gohil with just a run on the board.
Bhargav Merai was the third Gujarat batsman to get out as Prerak Mankad struck in the 13th over. While Dhruv Raval hit 8 fours in his 58-ball stay in the middle, Unadkat picked up his second wicket, dismissing Raval for 35.
Gujarat captain Parthiv Patel and Rujul Bhatt then added 37 runs. However, Dharmendrasinh Jadeja picked up two wickets in his first two overs, dismissing Parthiv and Chirag Gandhi to reduce Gujarat to 97/6.
Bhatt and Axar, though, denied Saurashtra any more wickets before stumps as Gujarat ended the day at 119/6.