For Assam and Orissa it?s the only comeback chance | india | Hindustan Times
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For Assam and Orissa it?s the only comeback chance

With Bengal sitting pretty on top after two very comfortable wins under their belts, the fight for the second team to qualify for the final round of the East Zone one-dayers is heating up.

india Updated: Feb 15, 2006 01:34 IST

With Bengal sitting pretty on top after two very comfortable wins under their belts, the fight for the second team to qualify for the final round of the East Zone one-dayers is heating up. Wednesday has Jharkhand pitted against Tripura and Assam against Orissa.

Both Jharkhand and Tripura have won one of the two matches they have played so far and, if the hosts manage a win, it will give them some breathing space over the other three. Tripura, having caused an upset win over Assam on Monday, will fancy their chances as well.

Interesting to see will be the match between Assam and Orissa. Both have lost the only match they have played. And both look at Wednesday's match as their only chance to come back.

"It was a setback for us," Sreetam Das, the Orissa coach said. "Complete lack of application by our batsmen was the reason for our loss in the first match against Jharkhand. The wicket eased out when we were batting and even then our batsmen failed to chase 232. We need to win tomorrow to stay in the race," he said.

Assam are yet to get over their defeat and had a full training session at the venue in the afternoon. "Hardly anyone touched the ball yesterday. So it's good that we have some practice today," J Arun Kumar, the former Karnataka skipper now a professional player for Assam, joked.

"We have a very young team. Most of the boys are from the under-17 and under-19 teams. We have left out players like Parag Das and Zulfikar Zufri. We need some time to settle down," coach Sanath Kumar said.

Arun Kumar, who was the skipper of Karnataka for the last four years and had led players like Anil Kumble and Rahul Dravid, too predicted that in a couple of years, this Assam team will be a the one to watch out for.

"The only difference I see here is in the body language. Karnataka players used to have that aggression and confidence about them even if they were not as talented as these north-east players. The boys here appear shy and quiet and the opponents get the impression that they lack confidence and get a major moral boost," Arun Kumar said.

Squads

Orissa: Debashis Mohanty (captain), Niranjan Behera, P Jaychandra, Prabanjan Mullick, Subit Biswal, RR Das, BBCC Mohapatra, Dipak Mangraj, Sourav Sehgal, Sanjay Satpati, Pritamjit Das, Tukuna Sahoo, Haladhar Das, Kuldip Sharma.

Assam: Vasant Sarvanan, Chandan Rawat, Parvez Aziz, Jason Lamare, J Arun Kumar, Gokul Sharma, Mriganko Sharma, Mrigen Talukdar, Anand Katti, Arlen Konwar, Sujay Tarafdar, Krishna Das, Mark Intynishant Bordoloi, Sajjad Hussain.

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Deep Dasgupta leaves for home

HTC, Dhanbad

Bengal skipper Deep Dasgupta left for home on Tuesday morning after getting news that his one-year-old son Aryan had bronchitis and had to be admitted. He is likely to return on Wednesday or on Thursday along with Sourav Ganguly. Bengal have their next practice on Thursday and play Assam on Friday.

On Tuesday morning, most of the Bengal players stayed indoors tired after constant cricket and travelling for the last few months. Some however along with coach Paras Mhambrey went to play badminton at an indoor stadium here.