January 24, 2002

Khoda guides Rajasthan to shores of respectability

Staff Reporter

A Gagan Khoda hundred saw Rajasthan end the opening day of their fiveday Ranji Trophy KnockOut against Bengal at a respectable 242 for five.

Playing at the KL Saini Ground, Jaipur, Rajasthan decided to bat after captain PK Krishnakumar won the toss. Khoda and the other opener, Vineet Saxena, had only put on 33 before Saxena was out lbw. The next two batsmen also departed early before Khoda found an able ally in his captain. The two put on a patient 143 runs for the fourth wicket before Krishnakumar was dismissed for a well-made 64 off 166 balls.

Khoda went on to raise his hundred in the company of Kuldeep Singh. He was looking good for many more when he run-out for 114 off 261 balls. The Rajasthan opener's hundred meant the home team had put themselves in line for a respectable total against the Rohan Gavaskar-led visiting team.

For Bengal, new-ball bowler Laxmi Rattan Shukla claimed two wickets. Kuldeep Singh, batting on 23, and wicket-keeper Rohit Jhalani, yet to open his account, were set to resume battle for Rajasthan on Thursday.