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Runs galore for Rajasthan

Contrast this. Five sessions, 33 wickets and game over inside two days in the Baroda versus Karnataka Ranji semifinal. In Jaipur, on the other hand, six sessions have produced a meagre five wickets with no clue on which way the game was headed on Tuesday. Khurram Habib reports.

india Updated: Jan 05, 2011 00:36 IST
Khurram Habib

Contrast this. Five sessions, 33 wickets and game over inside two days in the Baroda versus Karnataka Ranji semifinal. In Jaipur, on the other hand, six sessions have produced a meagre five wickets with no clue on which way the game was headed on Tuesday.

Tamil Nadu skipper Dinesh Karthik wore a sad look. He was dejected his bowlers had been taken apart in the semifinal against Rajasthan at the Sawai Man Singh Stadium, the hosts reaching 483 for five.

"This wicket isn't for good cricket," Karthik said. "You cannot have a result in four days if you give this sort of track." His four pacers did struggle and picked just five wickets, which came out of no brilliance of theirs.

They added to their woes, bowling a negative line on a flat wicket all day, not making Rajasthan play enough. You frustrate great bats by not making them play, but the average ones only feel relieved.

Rajasthan look on top. With a big total and Pankaj Singh and Deepak Chahar ready to be unleashed, they know a final spot should be theirs.

Opener Aakash Chopra was dismissed early on Tuesday after helping Rajasthan to a position of strength. Robin Bist was caught leg before and Rashmi Ranjan Parida's uppish drive was taken at covers as both were stepping on the gas.

Rajasthan went into their shell again and then grafted on. Skipper Hrishikesh Kanitkar, who suffered a foot injury on Monday evening, came back to frustrate TN. Sensing his struggle, they made him stretch by bowling a wide line, but it was Kanitkar who wore them down.

Young gun Ashok Menaria, the India U-19 skipper at the last junior World Cup, complemented him well. He went for his shots, picking singles and, at 88, looks good for his second successive ton of the season.