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Honours even as pitch takes centrestage

After the first day of the game between Bengal and Mumbai, the talking point at Eden Gardens was the wicket, reports Nilankur Das.

india Updated: Dec 02, 2006 03:38 IST

After the first day of the game between Bengal and Mumbai, the talking point at Eden Gardens was the wicket.

With all the hue and cry following India’s dismal show in South Africa to make sporting wickets for domestic matches, here is a match between two strong teams being played on a wicket that offered little bounce right from ball one. Mumbai complained of very little purchase from the pitch, Bengal of the ball not coming on. The hosts were 226 for two wickets at the end of Day One.

Soon after the first hour, which saw spin being introduced in the form of Ramesh Powar, Mumbai went on the defensive. Bengal too looked in no hurry and openers Arindam Das and Amitava Chakraborty were content rotating the strike. Opening bowlers Rajesh Verma and Swapnil Hazare struggled with line. While Verma bowled from wide of the stumps, drifting down the leg, Hazare kept on bowling wide of off-stump.

The fielding too did not help, with the slip cordon dropping two chances. Arindam’s edge to second slip off Hazare fell just short. In his very next over, a diving third slip failed to hold on to Amitava’s slash.

Scoreboard

Bengal (1st innings): Das lbw b Hazare 26, Chakraborty c&b Kulkarni 81, Jhunjhunwala batting 87, Tiwary batting 9, Extras (lb 15, w 2, nb 1, pen 5) 23

Total: 226 for 2

Fall of wkts: 1-71, 2-201

Bowling: Verma 17-2-48-0, Hazare 16-4-42-1, Powar 25-4-68-0, Kulkarni 26-13-31-1, Thaker 1-0-6-0, Shetty 5-2-10-0, Sharma 1-0-1-0.