20-year-old Shreyas Iyer smashed his maiden first class century (153) to help Mumbai grab the day one honours against Bengal in their Group A Ranji Trophy cricket match at the Eden Gardens.
Promoted to number three, Iyer hit the Bengal bowlers all over the park with four sixes and 16 boundaries in his 175-ball knock en route to his first century as Mumbai ended the day at a commanding 306 for four.
His four sixes included two against Veer Pratap and one off pacer Ashok Dinda as the youngster did not give Bengal bowlers any chance. Poor fielding too was a letdown for Bengal.
Iyer’s free-flowing innings finally came to an end after he edged Ashok Dinda behind the stumps, just three overs before bad light stopped play in 86.2 overs. Iyer put on a 176-run stand for the third wicket with a defiant Abhishek Nayar (65 from 127 balls; 8×4).
While Iyer was a delight to watch as he showed no mercy to an out-and-out seam attack from Bengal, hitting them all over the park, Nayar rotated the strike cleverly as the duo scored briskly at 4.69 per over in the association that began in the post lunch session.
It indeed helped their cause as the opening pair of Aditya Tare and Akhil Herwadkar began the proceedings at a snail’s pace, scoring at less than two per over.
“I had batted at number three in my U-19 days and I was pretty confident of doing well especially after my knock in the last match,” Iyer, who had scored 75 in their eight-wicket win against UP, said.
Mumbai could only seize the momentum in the second session of the day after the dismissal of Tare who consumed
105 balls for his 24 that also included two reprieves — while on 4 and then on 23 — in the slip cordon and both by a butterfingered Sudeep Chatterjee.
Earlier, captain Laxmi Ratan Shukla put the visitors in, hoping to captilise on the early morning gloomy condition on a seaming Eden track but his fielders let him down severely.
Despite being dropped twice, Tare was in no mood to score runs and had a tentative start, while the left-hander Herwadkar too looked out of sorts but he was the one to take charge against the new ball attack of Ashok Dinda and debutant Pritam Chakraborty.
Finally, Shukla gave the breakthrough with Chatterjee taking an easy catch of Herwadkar who chased an away going delivery without any footwork to be caught at second slip.
The quiet start meant Mumbai were just 79/1 in 33 overs at lunch and Tare was dismissed in the third over post lunch
as their runrate went northwards after Nayar joined Iyer in the middle.
Skipper Suryakumar Yadav (22) and Siddhesh Lad (0) were batting at close.
Brief Scores: Mumbai: 306/4 in 86.2 overs (Shreyas Iyer 153, Abhishek Nayar 65; Veer Pratap Singh 2/79).
Unmukt, Gambhir provide good start for Delhi against Gujarat
Back in form after his fluent century against Rajasthan, Unmukt Chand made full use of playing against below-par Gujarat attack with an attractive unbeaten 97 that took Delhi to a comfortable 178 for one on the first day of a Ranji Trophy cricket match.
With only 53 overs of play possible on another fog-hit day, Delhi batsmen made full use of a low and slow Feroz Shah Kotla track as Unmukt, in company of skipper Gautam Gambhir (66), added 171 runs for the opening stand.
Brief Scores: Delhi 1st Innings 178/1 in 53 overs (Unmukt Chand 97 batting, Gautam Gambhir 66, Virender Sehwag batting 2) vs Gujarat.
Mandeep, Yuvraj put Punjab in commanding position against Saurashtra
Mandeep Singh struck his maiden century of this Ranji Trophy season while Yuvraj Singh was nearing his third successive ton as Punjab reached 327 for three on day one of the Group B match against Saurashtra at Rajkot.
Yuvraj was batting on 95 alongside Mandeep, who was on 154 off 228 balls. Medium pacer Sudeep Tyagi was the most successful bowler for Saurashtra with figures of two for 51 in 15 overs.
Brief scores: Punjab 327 for 3 in 90 overs (Mandeep Singh batting 154, Yuvraj Singh batting 95; Sudeep Tyagi 2/51, Kamlesh Makwana 1/81) against Saurashtra.
Uttar Pradesh are 113/0 against J&K
Openers Tanmay Srivastava and Akash Verma struck a half century each as Uttar Pradesh made the most of the 29 overs of play possible by scoring 113 for no loss on day one against Jammu & Kashmir
Brief Scores: Uttar Pradesh: 113 for no loss in 29 overs (Tanmay Srivastava 56 batting, Akash Verma 55 batting).