New Delhi: Karnataka`s young left-arms pinner KP Appanna took full advantage of a dodgy Karnail Singh track as his five-for pushed Railways towards their second outright defeat in Elite Group match of the Ranji Trophy.
At stumps on the second day, Railways were 33 for two in their second innings --- still requiring 180 runs to avoid an innings defeat. The manner in which Railway batsmen batted, the match wouldn`t likely go into the final day.
In the morning, Abhimanyu Mithun (32, 3x4, 2x6) hit a few lusty blows as Karnataka posted a challenging 347. On a pitch where the ball was keeping low and times there was turn and jump, the Railmen decided to play a defensive game and dig their own grave.
On a pitch where there was no room for half measures, the Railway batsmen pushed and prodded only to get out for a paltry 134 in 53.5 overs. Appanna who was introduced in the very fifth over got career best figures of five for 39 also completed 50 first-class wickets.
Such was the nature of the track, that left-arm seamer Sreenath Aravind bowled left-arm spin and dismissed the dogged Sanjay Bangar (31, 130 deliveries).
Appanna got wicket with his very first delivery, an arm ball that skidded to find Shreyas Khanolkar (4) plumb in-front. In his very next over, Appanna got one to turn and jump sufficiently as Shivakant Shukla (17) gloved one to Manish Pandey at short leg. With Abhimanyu Mithun (3/29) accounting for Faiz Fazal, Railways were three down before lunch.
Gauging the nature of the pitch, Vinay told Aravind to bowl left-arm spinners which he did effectively. While Aravind (2/25) got Yere Goud (10) with his seam-up stuff, Bangar edged one of his slow left-arm delivery to the slip cordon.
The worst part about Railways batting was the spineless show as none of the batsmen showed any intent to go after the bowling like Robin Uthappa did yesterday. With a performance like this, it will be difficult to save relegation this time.
Karnataka 347 in 114.3 overs (Robin Uthappa 117, S Binny 68, R Vinay Kumar 48, M Karthik 5/88).
Railways 134 in 53.5 overs (S Bangar 31, KP Appanna 5/39, A Mithun 3/29, S Aravind 2/25) & 33/2 (R Vinay Kumar 1/4, A Mithun 1/5).