Agarkar shines as Mumbai squeeze Baroda

Mumbai buried Baroda under a mountain of runs on a flat track, and then watched irresponsible Baroda batsmen crumble under the weight. In reply to the hosts’ 645 for 9 declared, Baroda got off to a good start, but their batsmen played irresponsible shots to be reduced to 157 for 5, a predicament from which there seems no way back. Not against Mumbai, renowned masters of the game of not letting the opposition back down once.

It has been thus right from the time Wasim Jaffer and Sachin Tendulkar came together to bat on the first morning. Abhishek Nayar carried their good work forward on day two, and while he could add only 10 to his overnight 122 on day three, their bowlers did the job, both with the bat and the ball. Nayar fell at 563 for 8, but Ajit Agarkar and Javed Khan attacked the tired Baroda bowlers with a 73-run stand in 13.1 overs.

Agarkar, the better batsman of the two, relied more on finding gaps and picking twos while Javed hit four sixes, one of which resulted in a lost ball. Javed holed out just before reaching fifty, but Agarkar brought up his 16th in first-class cricket. Not many expected Mumbai to declare – what with the possibility of a sixth day in the match – but they asked Baroda to bat for 25 minutes before lunch. Read more