Pravin Tambe comes in handy as Mumbai eye bonus point
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The Mumbai-Orissa Ranji Trophy game, so far, has proved to be an one-sided affair. But strangely, the final day comes with a promise of a keen contest. Following on, Orissa, at stumps on Day 3 were 115/2, still trailing by 130 runs to Mumbai's first innings total of 501/9 declared. But Mumbai can't take it easy on Day 4 as they have a job a hand that doesn't allow them to let things drift.
Their first aim will be to take eight wickets. At the same time, Mumbai captain and opener Wasim Jaffer will also be hoping that he doesn't need to put on his pads one more time in this game. With Orissa pushed to a corner, Mumbai will press for an innings win to secure the all-important bonus point.
And if things go as planned, the seven points availed from this game will see the defending champions virtually secure a place in quarter-final knock out stage.
Once again it was the all-round show by the bowling department that denied Orissa any chance to get a foothold in the game. If it was the pacers who forced Orissa to follow-on, the important breakthroughs in the visiting team's second essay were managed by the 42-year-old debutant leg-spinner Pravin Tambe.
Orissa, through their openers Govind Podder and Girjia Rout, during their a patient 83-run opening partnership, were finally standing up to the Mumbai.
They had defied the pacers and looking to hang on till stumps. But Tambe, wicketless in the first innings, stuck.
He claimed both the openers and now the pressure was on the old hands Natraj Behera and Niranjan Behera to secure something from this outing.
At the end of the game, Behara hoped that the game would end in a draw. "We just need to make sure we don't make the mistakes we made in the first innings. Patience is the key because most of us got out on rash shots," said Behera.