February 8, 2002

Heavy rain leaves Orissa with a near-impossible task

Staff Reporter

Heavy rain at the Punjab C.A. Stadium, Mohali, Chandigarh has effectively washed away all hopes Orissa might have had of winning their Ranji Trophy quarter-final against Punjab. With ten wickets in hand, the visitors now have to chase down a mammoth victory target of 442 runs on the last day in order to book a place in the semi-finals.

Punjab had earlier posted 460 runs in their second innings. Ankur Kakkar, who began the day on 50 not out, went on to make 78 while fast bowler Vineet Sharma contributed his mite making 47. The two were mainly responsible in ensuring that Punjab added a valuable 103 runs to their overnight score of 357 for six. Medium-pacer Debashish Mohanty, who claimed four wickets, was the most successful bowler for the visitors.

Orissa openers Shiv Sunder Das and Biswa Bijayee Mohapatra set off in hot pursuit of the almost-impossible-to-achieve target rattling 26 runs in 3.2 overs before rain had the final say.