Delhi never recognised Mayank Siddana’s talent. Punjab did.
He demonstrated excellent temperament and technique to craft an unbeaten century as Punjab, again served diligently by Jiwanjot Singh, tightened its grip on Bengal on the second day of the Ranji Trophy match here on Saturday.
Bengal, resuming at 280 for seven, added 46 runs with Wriddhiman Saha, overnight 75, missing his century by two runs.
Playing second fiddle
And then the visiting side played second fiddle to the gifted Jiwanjot and the determined Siddana as they hit a century each and put on 226 runs for the second wicket and carried Punjab to a formidable 229 for one.
Jiwanjot’s form should not surprise those who watched him make that fabulous double-century on debut against Hyderabad in the last match.
His attitude this day was exemplary for a 21-year-old looking to make an impact.
Siddana, 25, built his innings like a professional. Bred on the challenging pitches of Delhi, the tall Siddana’s judicious shot-selection marked his batting today as he made the most of a wayward attack by the Bengal bowlers.
Siddana has struck 17 fours in his 190-ball essay and Jiwanjot ten fours in his 201-ball show.
Twice Siddana missed a century in the same match last year when he got out for 92 and 73 at Bangalore.
“I learnt the importance of converting good knocks into hundreds and applied myself today,” said Siddana.
This season, he was promoted from number five to three keeping in mind his ability to play pace and spin with equal finesse and there was a remarkable sense of commitment in Siddana’s game as he curbed his natural flair in the team’s interest.
Bengal — 1st innings: Jayojit Basu c Uday Kaul b Grewal 7, Subhomoy Das b Amitoz 28, Writam Porel c U. Kaul b S. Kaul 32, Manoj Tiwary c Mandeep b Grewal 20, Anustup Majumdar b Sandeep 22, Wriddhiman Saha c Sandeep b Rahul 98, Laxmi Ratan Shukla c Mandeep b Rahul 62, Arnab Nandi c U. Kaul b Sandeep 22, Veerpratap Singh b Rahul 17, Sourav Sarkar c Goel b Rahul 4, Ashoke Dinda (not out) 1, Extras (b-6, lb-6, w-1): 13, Total (in 108 overs): 326.
Fall of wickets: 1-16, 2-51, 3-80, 4-114, 5-118, 6-242, 7-275, 8-314, 9-324.
Punjab bowling: Manpreet Grewal 21-6-54-2, Sandeep Sharma 24-7-53-2, Siddarth Kaul 26-4-81-1, Amitoz Singh 18-4-50-1, Rahul Sharma 15-2-53-4, Bipul Sharma 3-0-17-0, Karan Goel 1-0-6-0.
Punjab — 1st innings: Jiwanjot Singh (batting) 102, Karan Goel b Shukla 12, Mayank Siddana (batting) 107, Extras (lb-5, nb-3): 8, Total (for one wkt. in 70 overs): 229.
Fall of wicket: 1-23.
Bengal bowling: Dinda 20-4-66-0, Sourav Sarkar 11-2-32-0, Laxmi Ratan Shukla 17-6-35-1, Veerpratap Singh 8-2-36-0, Arnab Nandi 11-1-43-0, Anustup Majumder 2-0-11-0, Manoj Tiwary 1-0-1-0.
Keywords: Ranji Trophy