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Ranji Trophy: In trouble, Mumbai fight fire with Shreyas Iyer

Wasim Jaffers injury later came as a blessing in disguise and Iyer was made to bat up the order.

Written by Devendra Pandey | Baroda |
Updated: February 1, 2015 9:39:25 am
Ranji trpohy, Ranji, Mumbai vs Baroda, Baroda vs Mumbai, Shreyas Iyer, Munaf Patel, Ranji Cricket, Cricket News, Cricket Shreyas Iyer scored 90 as Mumbai declared their second innings on 304/9.

It could have been risky business for him, but Shreyas Iyer knew he could only succeed if he counter-attacks on a pitch which has been against batters till now. The ball was turning sharp and medium-pacers are still getting bounce. At 84 for 4, the scoreboard wasn’t one that Mumbai liked, but a lead of 104 runs in the first innings have insured the visitors could hope to put up some decent total for Baroda to chase.

Mumbai, meanwhile, had lost openers Akhil Herwadkar and Shrideep Mangela after getting starts and the dressing room got a bit worried when first innings centurion Aditya Tare and Suryakumar Yadav were soon back in the pavilion.

At the Motibaug ground, on a third day Ranji Trophy pitch, Iyer once again stood tall for Mumbai. He had scored 50 and 52 on a turning track against Tamil Nadu in Chennai last week and though he fell rather cheaply in the first innings, his 90 in the second ensured Mumbai ended Day 3 with a decent score on the board.  Along with Siddhesh Lad (48) and Nikhil Patils (50 not out), Mumbai declared at 304 for 9 and a target of 408 runs a tough prospect for Baroda.

Before the season was about to start Mumbai coach Praveen Amre had said how he wanted Iyer to bat at No. 3. But such was the circumstance in the Mumbai line-up that Iyer could only be accommodated down the order. Wasim Jaffers injury later came as a blessing in disguise and Iyer was made to bat up the order.

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An opportunity was thrown at him against UP in Kanpur on a green top pitch, and Iyer slammed 75. Later, he scored back-to-back hundreds to prove his mettle and soon he became Mumbais key player.

On Saturday, as Mumbai looked for runs on the board, the onus fell on youngsters Iyer and Lad to deliver. Iyer greeted Swapnil Singh with a six at long on and then slammed three fours off Munaf Patel. He used his feet against spinners and when there was some width on offer, he went for his shots. Lad played some cheeky shots and also ensured to rotate the strike as much as he could. The duo added 114 runs in 19 overs for the fifth wicket and gave enough runs to Mumbai to look for a win.

On 90, Iyer was dropped by Saurabh Wakaskar at short leg, but one ball later he gave a simple catch at the same position off Yusuf Pathan to see Baroda getting a breakthrough. His innings had 12 fours and two sixes, but it was the pace which set the tone for Mumbai.
Baroda at stumps were 67 for 2 and have lost opener Aditya Waghmode and Hardik Pandya courtesy Mumbai pacers Balwinder Singh Sandhu and Shardul Thakur.

Brief scores: Mumbai 287 & 304/9 decl. (S Iyer 90, S Lad 48, N Patil 50 n.o.; Y Pathan 5/80). Baroda 184 & 67/2 in 20 overs.

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