Ranji Trophy: Odisha Let Pondicherry Off Hook After Reducing Them To 8/3

Cuttack: Odisha had a good day in office before Pondicherry showed some fight through a stubborn fifth-wicket partnership in their Ranji Trophy Elite Group D clash at Barabati Stadium.

Odisha, after posting 322 in the first innings, had the visitors reeling at 8/3, and then 56/4. But Pondicherry didn’t lose any further wicket as skipper Arun Karthik and Fabid Ahmed added 71 runs to take them to 127/4 at close on the second day.

Karthik, the 37-year-old wicketkeeper-batsman, attacked the Odisha bowlers to try and put them off length after Rajesh Mohanty had struck twice and Debabrata Pradhan once in the first seven overs.

Jay Pande stonewalled for 58 balls, scoring just 10, before being run out.

Karthik (77 batting in 104 balls) and Ahmed (31 batting in 73 balls) then applied themselves to keep Pondicherry’s hopes of a first-innings lead alive.

Odisha resumed on 230/4 this morning and lost Govinda Poddar (80) before a run had been added on Day 2.

Biplab Samantaray, who was on 41 overnight, found a willing partner in wicketkeeper-batter Aashirwad Swain and the two stitched an invaluable 71-run stand for the sixth wicket.

Once Samantaray fell for 82, Odisha disintegrated from 301/5 to 322 all out.

Medium-pacers Gaurav Yadav (5/69) and Saurabh Yadav shared nine wickets.

Brief scores: Odisha 322 (Govinda Poddar 80, Biplab Samantaray 82, Aashirwad Swain 40; Gaurav Yadav 5/69, Saurabh Yadav 4/89). Pondicherry 127/4 (Arun Karthik 77 batting; Rajesh Mohanty 2/35).

Match to continue on Day 3.

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