Tripura face uphill task
Samarth, Kapoor slam tons to power President's XI
KSCA President’s XI, resuming at 69/1, lost wickets in a heap at the end to be all out for 390 but not before building a commanding lead of 196 runs.
The visitors, though, did have something to cheer about as right-arm medium pacer Sanjay Majumdar returned with figures of 7-78 in 18.5 overs.
Some smart catching and fielding from the hosts then reduced Tripura to two for 35 in 10.2 overs before the day’s play was called off due to bad light at 5.05 pm. The visitors are still adrift of 161 runs.
Samarth (119, 196b, 15x4) and Kapoor (120, 193b, 14x4) – both right-handed bats – dominated the morning session and did not allow any of the Tripura bowlers to settle into a rhythm.
The visitors were either too short or too full and frequently strayed down the leg which allowed both Samarth and Kapoor to gain the upper hand.
The classy Kapoor stamped his class early on as he bisected the deep midwicket boundary with two pulls even though the trap was set for him.
Soon Kapoor brought up the 100-run partnership with a stylish flick in front off square off Saha, who erred in line all too often. His final figures of 1-56 from 15 overs were on the expensive side compared to the control the hosts’ tweakers had exhibited on Monday.
After Samarth reached a well-deserved century, Kapoor emulated him when he dabbed to mid-on. This also took the partnership to 200.
The Tripura bowlers were looking listless and crying out for inspiration which came in the form of Majumdar, who ran through the middle-order.
But it was the part-time medium pace of Kaushal Acharjee that started the damage. He broke the partnership when a tired-looking Samarth edged him behind to ’keeper Nirupam Sen.
From two for 263, President’s XI slipped to seven for 318 as Majumdar ran riot in a period sandwiched between post-lunch and tea sessions.
The hosts looked in danger of falling well short of 400 but a few lusty blows from Stalin Hoover and Ronit More took the score past the 375 mark.
After an admirable fightback, Tripura needed a solid start to complement their bowlers’ efforts but were two down inside eight overs.
With the pitch starting to take turn, Tripura have a tough task on their hands to even take the affair into a fourth day, let alone save the match.
Brief scores: Tripura CA: 194 all out in 74.4 overs and 35/2 in 10.2 overs vs KSCA President’s XI: 390 all out in 95.5 overs (Kunal Kapoor 120, R Samarth 119; Sanjay Majumdar 7-78).