Murtaza puts up on top Vs TN
By Ashok Venugopal | ENS - CHENNAI
24th December 2012 12:15 PM
The second day’s play of the Group B Ranji Trophy tie between Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh belonged to Ali Murtaza. He single-handedly decimated the hosts to put Uttar Pradesh on top here on Sunday. Resuming from his overnight 49, Murtaza completed his century (106; 152b,10x4,3x6) and picked up four wickets to put TN on the mat at 149-6. Thanks to Murtaza’s ton, UP made 392. The fact that UP were let off the hook must have rattled the TN players as they caved in without a fight.
TN made a poor start losing Abhinav Mukund cheaply. Murali Vijay along with Arun Karthick steadied the team. Arun played positively and most of his scoring shots were boundaries. Vijay was compact, watchful and played on the merit of the ball. He cut out his flamboyance and looked to post a big score. At this point, Arun lost his concentration misread Murtaza’s length and edged to keeper Eklavya Dwivedi. Arun added 61 for the second wicket with Vijay.
Vijay was involved in a recovery act with Baba Aparajith. His square drives off Murtaza were straight out of the copybook and the sparse crowd was delighted to see Vijay in full flow.
Having the cushion of a huge total, Murtaza kept test Vijay. During one such spell Vijay got hit on the pad and there was a loud appeal for LBW which was turned down. This upset Vijay’s (42) concentration as he immediately played a soft push, which was held at silly point by Tanmay Srivastava giving Murtaza his second wicket.
Vijay’s dismissal triggered a collapse with Dinesh Karthik falling to Murtaza. Dinesh’s uppish drive was held by Mohd Kaif at covers, which sent Murtaza into celebration mode. Murtaza’s perseverance and patience helped him bag all the prize wickets.
Earlier in the morning, Murtaza continued from where he left on Saturday and scored runs freely. He and Prashanth added 120 for the seventh wicket which took the game away from the hosts. Murtaza reached the three figure mark with a towering six off Aushik Srinivas.
“I am delighted and this innings(century)is really special. I am satisfied with this innings as it came against a quality side,” said Murtaza.
“We will go for an outright win,” said Murtaza.
Brief scores: UP 392 in 128.5 overs (Ali Murtaza 106, M Kaif 68; M Rangarajan 4/107, Aushik Srinivas 2/107) vs Tamil Nadu 149 for 6 in 57 overs (M Vijay 42, Arun Karthik 32; Ali Murtaza 4/65).
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