Jharkhand made a giant stride towards advancing to the Ranji Trophy 2021-22 quarterfinals as they posted a mammoth 769 for 9 against a struggling Nagaland on day two of their knockout match at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Sunday. (More Cricket News)
The 17-year-old wicketkeeper batter Kumar Kushagra made the most of the listless Nagaland attack to steer his side to a huge total after Jharkhand resumed the day at 402 for 5.
Kushagra, who was 112 not out overnight, kept on his onslaught on the Nagaland bowlers to slam 266 from 269 balls (37x4, 2x6) in his third first-class appearance. It was his maiden first class hundred.
The youngster, who was a part of the India U-19 team for 2020 South Africa tour, got to 200 with a boundary off Lemtur just before lunch to complete the milestone in 213 deliveries.
Senior left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem also made hay, cruising to a career-best 123 not out (223 balls; 14x4, 1x6) as the duo put together 166 runs for the seventh wicket after overnight batter Anukul Roy got out for 59.
Looking unstoppable, Kushagra kept on his onslaught against the tired Nagaland bowlers and got to his next 50 in just 39 deliveries. Kense finally gave the breakthrough and dismissed Kushagra and Sushant Mishra (0) in four balls in a temporary respite.
After Kushagra's departure, Nadeem held the centre-stage with number 11 Rahul Shukla (29 not out) en route to his second first class century.
Nagaland employed seven bowlers with the spin duo of Imliwati Lemtur and Khrievitso Kense returning with three wickets each, while Shrikant Mundhe, Chopise Hopongkyu and Rongsen Jonathan claimed one each.
Brief Scores: Jharkhand: 769 for 9 in 177 overs (Kumar Kushagra 266, Shahbaz Nadeem 123 not out, Virat Singh 107; Khrievitso Lemtur 3/138, Imliwati Lemtur 3/161) vs Nagaland. Match to continue.