Bengal stormed into the finals by 174 runs on the fourth day of 2nd semi-finals of 2019/20 Ranji Trophy season defeating star-studded Karnataka side played at Eden Gardens, Kolkata on Tuesday.
Starting on the overnight score of 98 for 3, Karnataka were dealt a massive blow as Mukesh Kumar dismissed dangerous Manish Pandey cheaply. Kumar bowled with tight line and lengths which did not allow Karnataka batsmen to score runs easily. KV Siddarth and S Sharath were dismissed for 0. Krishnappa Gowtham enjoyed with aggressive hits. On the other hand, Devdutt Paddikal looked impressive and reached his fifty yesterday off 102 balls. Mukesh Kumar created havoc among the Karnataka batsmen dismissing KV Siddarth, S Sharath and then well set Devdutt Paddikal.
K Gowtham and Mithun enjoyed some big hits which were not enough. Mukesh Kumar was simply sensational with his bowling taking his 6th wicket getting the wicket of Ronit More. Akash deep finished the job for Bengal dismissing Mithun for 38 to bowl out Karnataka for 177 runs in the 2nd innings. Bengal won the 2nd semi-finals by 174 runs to qualify for their first finals after the 2006/07 season.
After being asked to bat first by Karun Nair on the first day, Bengal were tottering at 67 for 6. Majumdar and Shahbaz Ahmed played with positive intent to add 72 runs for the 7th wicket. Majumdar kept the momentum on and made sure that Bengal recover. Akash deep joined him and added 103 runs for the 8th wicket. At the end of day 1, Bengal were 275 for 9.
Majumdar kept the momentum going on the 2nd day and helped Bengal post a competitive total of 312. Majumdar played a great inning to remain not out 149. Ishan Porel, Mukesh Kumar and Akash deep were superb bowling out Karnataka for a paltry total of 122. KL Rahul who was included in the squad failed in both innings.
Abhimanyu Mithun was superb on the 2nd evening ripping out Bengal top order. Bengal ended the 2nd day on 72 for 4. Majumdar and Ahmed came to rescue again adding 61 runs for the 7th wicket. Karnataka bowled out Bengal for 161. Karnataka batted much better in 2nd innings with Paddikal showing his class.
Mukesh Kumar, Ishan Porel and Akash deep made the life tough for Karnataka batsmen to bowl them out for 177 in their 2nd innings.
Bengal 312 in 92 overs ( Majumdar 149*, Akash deep 44, Ronit More 3/52, Mithun 3/77) and 161 in 54.4 overs ( Sudip Chatterjee 45, Majumdar 41, Mithun 4/23, K Gowtham 3/15) beat Karnataka 122 in 36.2 overs ( K Gowtham 31, Mithun 24, Ishan Porel 5/39, Akash deep 3/30) and 177 in 55.3 overs ( Devdutt Paddikal 62, Mithun 38, Mukesh Kumar 6/61, Akash deep 2/44) by 174 runs.
For his superb knocks, Anstup Majumdar was awarded the man of the match.
Bengal will face the winners of Saurashtra and Gujarat in the finals to be played from 9th March.