*Mudhasir, Ian impress
Excelsior Sports Correspondent
JAMMU, Dec 6: Magnificent half-centuries by Test Cricketer Irfan Pathan (91) and skipper Parvez Rasool (87) helped Jammu and Kashmir to score a decent total of 290 runs off 71.4 overs in their first innings of the Ranji Trophy Group-C match at GGM Science College Hostel ground, here.
Uttar Pradesh was struggling at 31/3 in 14 overs at stumps on day-1 today.
Opener Madhav Kaushik (11) and skipper Aksh Deep Nath (1) were at the crease at the draw of stumps. Speedster Mohd Mudhasir was the pick of the bowlers for Jammu and Kashmir, sending back all the three wickets, with Mohammad Saif (6), Dhruv Pratap Singh (0) and Priyam Garg (4). He was impressive and bowled with nagging line and teasing length, hitting good areas to scalp 3 wickets by conceding 17 runs in his 7 overs. His pace bowling partner Umar Nazir Mir was more economical, bowling 6 overs for just 3 runs, with 4 maidens and was unlucky not to take any wicket.
Earlier, put into bat, Jammu and Kashmir openers began cautiously, scoring 24 runs in first 12 overs, before in form opener Shubham Khajuria was dismissed for 19 runs. Then another opener Ahmad Omar Banday (10) and Paras Sharma (6) fell cheaply to make it 52/3 in 20.3 overs, before an impressive partnership of 102 runs Parvez Rasool and Ian Dev Singh took the score to 154/4 as Ian was dismissed on the last delivery of 46th over at his individual score of 49 runs. He was impressive in his shot selection and hit 8 crispy boundaries. However, the day belonged to the duo of Irfan Pathan and Rasool who sent the bowlers on a leather-hunt rather butchered the rival bowlers with utmost ease and elegance. Irfan hit 10 splendid fours and 5 towering sixes in his power-packed 76-ball knock, while Rasool was in awe inspiring touch in his 92-ball 87, studded with 13 classic boundaries and one huge six. Both the batsmen showed grit, grace and brilliance. Irfan in particular, was in murderous mood against most successful bowler Saurabh Kumar, hitting him for 4 consecutive sixes in one over.
Debutant Akash Choudhary contributed valuable 24-ball 14 runs and was instrumental in giving company to Pathan, making last wicket partnership of 71 runs.
For Uttar Pradesh, left-arm spinner Saurabh Kumar was the wrecker-in-chief, taking 6 important wickets by conceding 90 runs in 18.4 overs, while medium pacers Imtiyaz Ahmed and Yash Dayal took 2 wickets each.
Prominent among others, the match was witnessed by former Supreme Court Justice CK Prasad, Administrator JKCA; former DIG Syed Ashiq Hussain Bukhari, CEO JKCA and former Judge Jang Bahadur Singh Jamwal.
Jammu and Kashmir team is being accompanied by Rajesh Dhar as manager, Milap Mewada as coach, Bilal Shamas as Assistant Manager, Dr Ajaz Chilloo as Physio, Mushtaq Ahmed Rather as fielding coach, Amit Bargotra as trainer and Syed Mujtaba Rabbani as logistic manager.