Ranji Trophy: Saxena, Bist save Rajasthan blushes with fighting fifties

Balangir: Vineet Saxena (87) and Chetan Bist (51) saved the day for Rajasthan by striking fighting unbeaten half-centuries as the visitors ended the day one at 191 for five against Odisha in their Ranji Trophy Group B cricket match, here yesterday.

Put into bat, Rajasthan were off to a poor start as opener Pranay Sharma (0) left without bothering the scorers. He was caught behind off paceman Basant Mohanty in the third over of the day.

Robin Bist (10) was trapped by medium fast bowler Deepak Behera (2/35) and talented Ashok Menaria became the second victim of Mohanty. The visitors also lost Rajesh Bishnoi (11) and Puneet Yadav (15) to be tottering 85 for five.

From here Saxena and wicket-keeper batsman Bist joined forces and resurrected the Rajasthan innings with their gritty 106-run unconquered stand for the sixth wicket.

Saxena has faced so far 250 balls and helped himself with 10 shots to the fence while Bist took 141 balls in his patient knock, which had eight boundaries.

Brief Scores:
Rajasthan: 191 for 5 in 90 overs.(Vineet Saxena 87 batting, Chetan Bist 51 batting; Basant Mohanty 2/37, Deepak Behera 2/35).

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