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UP have task cut out

cricket Updated: Jan 05, 2009 23:34 IST
Sharad Deep
Sharad Deep
Hindustan Times
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The Uttar Pradesh bowlers bowled their heart out on a docile wicket to help their team stage a comeback against Tamil Nadu on the second day of Ranji Trophy semifinal here on Monday. Tamil Nadu, though, managed to post a daunting 445-run total, but that's much less than what they looked set for at 296 for 2 at the end of day one.

The UP bowlers, led by Praveen Kumar, launched a spirited charge and were duly rewarded with some quick wickets. Praveen Kumar drew the first blood, inducing an edge from Badrinath (65) to see the wicketkeeper Amir Khan pouch it with glee in the fifth over of the day. Soon, he forced Dinesh Karthik (72) and S Suresh Kumar (12) make the same mistake with the same result.

Meanwhile, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar sent S Vidyut's (3) off-stump cart-wheeling with a quicker one. On seeing his senior partners running in with such determination and reaping rich rewards, Imtiyaz Ahmed too bent his back hard and got rid of R Ashwin (15) and L Balaji (17) in quick succession, reducing Tamil Nadu to 351 for 7 from a domineering 303 for 2.

Tamil Nadu fought back through a 48-run stand for the eighth wicket between C Ganpathy and C Suresh. Ganpathy hammered ten boundaries in his unbeaten 67 to help Tamil Nadu reach 450.

UP began the chase on a wrong note as they lost in-form Tanmay Srivastava for just 1. Suresh Raina (10) and Shivakant Shukla (9), managed to hold on till the umpires called it a day.