February 9, 2002

Punjab notch up 243-run victory

Staff Reporter
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Considering that Orissa had already conceded a slender two-run first-innings lead to Punjab, the final day's play in the Ranji Trophy quarter-final at Mohali was merely academic, an exercise to determine a result rather than chalk in the name of the semi-finalist.

Chasing 463 was always a remote proposition, and Punjab's Navdeep Singh merely expedited the Orissa collapse. Taking 5-36 off 12.1 overs, Navdeep broke the back of the lower middle order, and Orissa's last five wickets fell for the addition of just 17 runs.

There were some knocks of note in Orissa's innings, though. Opener Biswa Mohapatra struck 44 off just 29 balls, with eight boundaries, while Rashmi Ranjan Parida made 40 off 58 balls. As in the first innings, the highest scorer was Pravanjan Mullick, who made 72 off 115 balls before falling as the final wicket of the innings.

Notching up a win by 243 runs, Punjab thus advanced through to the semi-final of the Ranji Trophy. Orissa, however, can only rue their toothless bowling in Punjab's second innings, when the team scored 460 without any of the batsmen reaching three figures.