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Hyderabad crawl back, with second new ball & bat

Raakesh Natraj

Posted: Nov 26, 2012 at 0042 hrs IST

Hyderabad: The track at Uppal did not offer much in terms of movement or turn — after all, Mumbai had ended Saturday on 325 for two — but what was available was a smidgen of bounce. Hyderabad seemed to wake up to this fact only on the second day, but put this knowledge to use to regain some of the ground they lost earlier.

They bowled Mumbai out for the addition of just 118 runs, and at stumps, were at a healthy 138 for one themselves. Captain Akshath Reddy had missed a trick on the first day when he allowed overnight batsmen Hiken Shah (156, 267b, 17x4) and Rohit Sharma (112, 176b, 9x4, 3x6) to get to their landmarks under little pressure with the old ball and defensive fields.

But on Sunday, he began with the new ball and, with the wicket still offering that little bit of lift, was rewarded straight away.

Shah was the first to go, caught at gully off medium pacer Ravi Kiran just 15 balls into the day. Ankit Chavan would perish the same way, failing to keep the cut down, a few overs later. In between, Sharma pulled a short delivery straight to fine leg and when Ashish Reddy cleaned up Ramesh Powar a few overs later, Mumbai had lost four wickets for 32 runs.

At this stage, the score was 367 for six, and with Suryakumar Yadav straining his groin during practice at the start of the day and set to miss the game, Mumbai were in danger of getting bowled out well short of 400.

Abhishek Nayar (64, 90b, 7x4), in the company of Kshemal Waingankar, threw his bat around, and like on the first day, Akshath Reddy spread his field at the first sign of trouble. The pair added 70 off 80 balls before Ashish Reddy (4/77) ran through the tail post lunch, the visitors finishing on 443.

Hyderabad began in sedate fashion. When Sharma realised the batsmen weren’t looking to go for their shots, he brought his field in and the first dozen overs saw all 11 fielders inside the 30-yard circle for the most part.

The home side crawled to 17 for no loss in 10 overs and the scoreboard read 36 for one in 14.5 overs when Abhinav Kumar walked back leg before, offering no shot to Waingankar.

perfect Plan

Akshath Reddy was however working to a plan. After dead batting his way through the first spells of Waingankar and Avishkar Salvi, the skipper preyed on the shorter length of first change Shardul Thakur. Playing the cut and slice shots to good effect, Akshath Reddy gathered his first six boundaries in the arc between sweeper cover and third man.

The new-ball pair of Salvi and Waingankar went for 22 runs off the 18 overs they bowled, while Thakur was hit for 47 off his eight. Mumbai had a lot of runs to play with and the field fanned out, but this made it only easier on the new batsman Hanuma Vihari.

The 19-year old was unbeaten for a composed 53, with only four hits to the fence, two of which came via Rohit Sharma long hops in the final over of the day. Akshath Reddy too had compiled his fourth half-century of the season by then, as Hyderabad made a fist of day two.

Brief scores: Mumbai 443 in 126.3 overs (Aditya Tare 62, Hiken Shah 156, Rohit Sharma 112, Abhishek Nayar 64; Ashish Reddy 4/77, Mohammed Khadder 2/50) vs Hyderabad 138 for one in 47 overs (Akshath Reddy batting 63, Hanuma Vihari batting 53; Kshemal Waingankar 1/4)

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