Ishan Porel’s fifer helped Bengal bundle out visitors Karnataka for a mere 122 to establish a massive 190-run first-innings lead in the second semi-final of the 2019-20 Ranji season in Kolkata. Helped by Anustup Majumdar’s 149, Bengal had posted in excess of 300 in their first bout.
As play ended on the second day at the Eden Gardens, one couldn’t help but feel that the match had taken heavily-decisive strides in favour of the home side. As many as 15 wickets fell — five of Bengal’s from either innings and all 10 of Karnataka’s — on the day that is usually labelled as the best day to bat on. The interesting thing, however, was that all 15 of the dismissals were affected by right-arm medium-pacers. In fact, all six right-arm medium-pacers who did take the ball returned with at least a wicket to their name on the day.
Earlier in the day, Bengal added 37 more runs for the last wicket to breach the 300-run mark and reach 312, largely thanks to Majumdar’s unbeaten 149, which included 21 fours and three sixes. Porel then ran riot — with able support from Mukesh Kumar (two for 46) and Akash Deep (three for 30) — as Karnataka’s resistance lasted only as far 122.
Only KL Rahul (26) got past 20 among the top-order batsmen, while Krishnappa Gowtham (31 off 24 balls) and Abhimanyu Mithun (24 off 27 balls) played cameos later on. Despite the obvious assistance for fast bowlers, which was well exploited by Mithun (three for nine) in the second bout, Bengal added 72 more runs to their first-innings lead with the loss of four wickets. At stumps, the effective score reads 262 for four in favour of the hosts.
Brief scores: Bengal 312 all-out in 92 overs (Anustup Majumdar 149*; Ronit More 3-52) & 72/4 in 22 overs (Sudip Chatterjee 40*; Abhimanyu Mithun 3-9) lead Karnataka 122 all-out in 36.2 overs (Krishnappa Gowtham 31; Ishan Porel 5-39) by 262 runs.