Jaffer’s triple ton grinds Saurashtra

January 5th, 2009 - 8:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Sachin TendulkarChennai, Jan 5 (IANS) Skipper Wasim Jaffer notched up a triple century and Sachin Tendulkar blasted his way to a ton as Mumbai batted themselves into a strong position against Saurashtra on the second day of the Ranji Trophy semi-final here Monday.At close of second day’s play, Mumbai were 637 for six in the first innings after Jaffer hit 301 (459 balls, 27 x 4s) and Tendulkar retired hurt after scoring 122 (5 x 6s, 9 x 4s) at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium here.

Saurashtra bowling was put to the sword on a day when Mumbai scored nearly 369 runs.

Jaffer played a typical innings characterised by crunching strokes off the backfoot and wristy flicks and drives as he paced his knock to suit the needs of his team.

On a flat pitch, Jaffer enjoyed every luxury a batsman would hope for as he dropped anchor at one end to post his fourth three-figure knock of the season.

But it was Tendulkar who provided the much-needed impetus to the innings that resumed at 268 for one this morning with Saurashtra straightaway opting for the second new ball.

Walking in after Ajinkya Rahane fell 15 short of a century with the score on 332, having added 241 for the second wicket, Tendulkar ruthlessly cut open the already dispirited Saurashtra attack with a series of sledgehammer blows to step up the scoring rate.

With Jaffer and Tendulkar in good nick, the Saurashtra bowlers were made to look pedestrian though the fielding was quite enthusiastic. Although both the batsmen enjoyed their share of luck, Mumbai’s intent of piling up a huge score in quick time was fairly obvious.

Saurashtra skipper Jayadev Shah tried out as many as eight bowlers, including himself, but none of them really made an impression as runs continued to flow. Tendulkar, dropped when on 72 soon after lunch, in particular took the attack to the opposition.

The only relief that Saurashtra received was when Tendulkar decided to retire, apparently suffering from fever, after putting on 236 runs with Jaffer to take the total past the 500-mark. Thereafter, Mumbai lost a few wickets as the batsmen went for quick runs.

Although Saurashtra bowlers stuck to their task gamely, none of them hassled the batsmen. The two left-arm spinners Rakesh Dhruv and Ravindra Jadeja worked hard for their two wickets apiece while the rest looked rather innocuous and even resorting to some negative tactics.

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