Mishra, Jayant peg back Karnataka

Haryana duo shares partnership of 392 as visitors pile up 587/9 decl

Mishra, Jayant peg back Karnataka

Amit Mishra and Jayant Yadav quashed any hope Karnataka had of taking six points from their Group ‘B’ encounter against Haryana at the KSCA ground in Rajnagar on Sunday.

Karnataka play their last and final league encounter in Pune from December 29 and given the placid nature of the pitch there, it was a prerequisite for the hosts to come up with a fine show here.

They looked well on their way to achieve what they had set out for after the first couple of sessions on day one but from there on it was the Mishra and Yadav show. Mishra (202 n.o., 567m, 374b, 21x4, 1x6) and Yadav (211, 451m, 367b, 26x4) defied everything Karnataka had to throw at them and helped Haryana cruise to a daunting 587 for nine declared in 176.4 overs.

Karnataka openers KL Rahul (7) and Robin Uthappa scored 11 runs of the final over of the day. The duo of Mishra and Yadav, that had helped Haryana to 293 with an eighth-wicket partnership of 135 runs on Saturday, added to Karnataka’s misery by piling on a 392 runs for the eighth wicket after batting for nearly eight hours before Ronit More (2/106) caught Yadav in front of the stumps to end the record partnership.

The previous highest partnership for the eighth wicket was set by Tamil Nadu’s S Sriram and MR Srinivas in their match against Punjab in 2002-2003. The duo had scored 268 runs to frustrate Punjab, much like how Haryana infuriated Karnataka in front of a highly vocal local crowd.

Starting the day with confidence, the 22-year-old Yadav was peaceful in his approach. Mishra, meanwhile, was in no mood to let Karnataka’s bowlers sense an opening. He went after HS Sharath and SL Akshay with equal disdain and took a particular liking to the part-time spinners who Binny used with no particular strategy.

Going into the lunch break with the score on 412 for seven, a vociferous Haryana camp applauded Mishra and Yadav, who had both scored centuries by then, for their resilience but the rest of the team was also aware of another significant achievement by their skipper. The leg-spinner was named in India’s squad for the three-match ODI series against Pakistan.

Returning from the break, Mishra was a force Karnataka would eventually wish they had reckoned with. While Yadav craftily went about adding runs, Mishra grew impatient and lashed out at KP Appanna and SL Akshay.

Binny could do very little about what the duo was doing to his side but he was given a ray of hope in the 149th over.

Yadav, on 169, uppishly drove a full-length ball from Amit Verma straight down mid-off’s throat. As the ball popped right out of HS Sharath’s giant hands, Yadav breathed a sigh a relief while Binny fell to his knees in disbelief.

About thirty runs after that slip-up, Karnataka had another chance. Mishra, who had rushed to 183 and carried his team to 531, danced down the track in attempt to dispatch Verma.

Instead, the 30-year-old missed the ball by a mile only to be stumped by CM Gautam. Though it seemed like an obvious dismissal, Mishra asked the umpires to check with match referee Sanjay Patil.

Patil ruled the batsman not out as Gautam had dislodged the bails before collecting the ball. And so Karnataka’s nightmare continued but it was only going to last for another 29 runs as Yadav was sent back.

Mishra remained stoic despite the loss of Yadav and Mohit Sharma (12) and rushed to a well-deserved double century at the stroke of which he declared and asked Karnataka to have a go.

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