Bengal, Railways clash in must-win Ranji Trophy match
With time running out fast for both the teams, Bengal and Railways will face off tomorrow in a must-win match to keep themselves in contention for quarters of the Ranji Trophy cricket tournament.
Kolkata: With time running out fast for both the teams, Bengal and Railways will face off tomorrow in a must-win match to keep themselves in contention for quarters of the Ranji Trophy cricket tournament.
Bengal will stick to their ploy of three-spin attack but more than the team combination it's the innocuous Eden surface that hardly assisted the bowlers which may give the team think-tank some reasons to worry.
After trying out greentops in their first three matches, Bengal resorted to turner against Jammu and Kashmir in the previous outing but result was no different as they settled for a third successive draw at home.
Bengal also have lost to Karnataka in their first home match this season and they have just seven points from four outings, something that reflect in their seventh place in the eight-team group A table.
Now Bengal with 11 points must win their remaining two matches, the last one versus Madhya Pradesh, to remain in the hunt for a quarterfinal spot.
"We will play for six points. One good win can change the scenario, we just need four days of good cricket," a confident Laxmi Ratan Shukla, said.
The captain will have the additional responsibility of leading the solitary seam attack as much of their success will depend on how the trio of Saurasish Lahiri, Iresh Saxena and rookie Amit Banerjee fare.
Sandipan Das, who figured in the XI in the washout match against Uttar Pradesh in Ghaziabad, is likely to sit out as Shreevats Goswami may play the specialist batsman's role.
At the same time, Bengal cannot afford to take Railways lightly with three former Bengal players in the opponents roster.
After being ignored by their home state, the trio of Arnab Nandi, Arindam Ghosh and Anustup Majumdar will be hungry to prove a point or two.
"Despite playing well in my Ranji debut (against Gujarat) at the Motera, I still wasn't selected for the next game," Nandi said.
He further cited example of the 2011-12 Vijay Hazare Trophy-winning season for Bengal.
"I played almost all matches under Sourav Ganguly but I was again dropped," he said.
Railways will also have a potent bowling attack and talented legspinner Karn Sharma, who made a surprise Test debut under Virat Kohli in Australia, will play a key role.
Railways are fresh from their first innings lead against Jammu and Kashmir and are not intimidated to play on a turner.
"We did well in TN securing three points on a turner. We have promising Karn Sharma. We have three former Bengal players and their experience here will come handy," skipper Mahesh Rawat said.