Cuttack, Feb 02: Hosts Odisha overcame early jitters to fight back with a 230/4 first innings score against Puducherry at stumps on Day 1 at the Barabati Stadium, here on Friday.
Former captains duo and seasoned batting all-rounders Govinda Poddar (80*) and Biplab Samantray (41*) were busy with an unbeaten 118-run 5th wicket partnership, when the umpires announced Stumps for Day 1. Their efforts rescued Odisha from a mini collapse.
Earlier put into bat, Odisha openers duo of skipper Shanatu Mishra and Anurag Sarangi continued their lack of partnership at the top this season. Sarangi was the first to depart with an individual contribution of only 8.
Man-in-form Sandeep Pattnaik and captain Mishra stitched a 70-run stand for the second wicket. But soon Mishra (40), Pattnaik (44) and former CSK player Subhranshu Senapati (8) returned to the pavilion in quick succession.
While Odisha were at the door of yet another batting collapse, Poddar and Samantray used all their experience and played patiently to avoid any more damage on the day.
For Puducherry, right-arm pacer Gaurav Yadav scalped 2 wickets for 64 runs, as he toiled hard sending down 25 overs in the day.
The other two pacers in the side left-arm Ravi Yadav and right-arm medium Saurabh Yadav too claimed a wicket apiece.
Lot would depend on how the two unbeaten old warhorses Poddar and Samantray play the Day 2 first session. If they can carry on their partnership till Lunch, then Odisha with a long tail can hope for a good show at the familiar Barabati pitch.
With Odisha pace spearhead Rajesh Mohanty in red hot form this season, the hosts will definitely hold an edge if they can bat through the second day, or post anything beyond 350.
Because, traditionally Barabati wicket is bowling friendly, and Puducherry will have to bat on a Day 4 pitch, which in all probability will help bowlers.
This season. Odisha have played four matches so far. They have won one, lost two and managed a first innings lead in the fourth.
Odisha won their last match at Tangi DRIEMS Ground against Himachal Pradesh.
Prior to that, Odisha have lost to Baroda by 147 runs in Vadodara, drawn with Madhya Pradesh in Indore (enjoyed first innings lead though), lost to Jammu and Kashmir in DRIEMS Ground, Cuttack by 2 wickets. They have 9 points from four outings.
Odisha 230/4 in 87 overs (Govinda Poddar 80* and Biplab Samnatray 41*, Gaurav Yadav 2/64).
Match to Continue.