Shavian Blah turned in another solid performance with the ball for Meghalaya to claim a five-wicket haul against Manipur on the second day of their U-19 men’s Cooch Behar Trophy match at the MCA Ground in Polo here today.
However, the visitors, who were in danger of crashing out, managed to rescue their first innings all thanks to a century by Md Aqeel Ahamed (138). Manipur finished the day on 259/8, still trailing Meghalaya’s first innings total of 320 all out by 61 runs.
Meghalaya resumed play today morning on 264/7 and were able to get over the 300-run mark with Kishlay Vishlux providing much of the impetus in his unbeaten knock of 52 from 166 deliveries (7x4s).
Manipur had to face an uncomfortable few overs before lunch where they had to defend against the pace of Angkit Tamang (1/52) and Shavian (5/65).
Three wickets fell to the latter bowling from the tennis court end, with all three batters nicking the ball into the gloves of wicketkeeper Dipankar Baruah.
That left Manipur on 9/3 at lunch and they soon lost a fourth wicket in the second session, again caught Dipankar, bowled Shavian.
From 18/4, the visitors experienced a mild recovery with a 60-run fifth wicket partnership. Heishnam Manikanta Singh decided to try and hit Manipur’s way out of the rut they were in and flung his bat anytime he was given even a hint of width. This was all a little risky but he managed to get away with it, eventually falling to leg spinner Charm Marbaniang (1/54) for 31.
Ahamed then carried on and began to clobber the Meghalaya bowlers, especially Charm, who conceded 54 runs in just 5 overs. Ahamed smashed 14 fours and eight sixes in his 123-ball innings and he had good company lower down the order from Jordash (40 from 50 deliveries, 8x4s) and Iliyas (26 from 32, 3x4s, 1x6s).
Ahamed was ultimately Shavian’s fifth wicket, falling lbw, with Angkit accounting for Jordash and Kishlay (1/43) for Iliyas.
Meghalaya will aim to wrap up the Manipur innings as quickly and as cheaply as possible tomorrow morning so as to claim a first innings lead.