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Bengal take on Nagaland in Ranji Trophy

Sovima (Nagaland): Crucial nine points in their kitty after two games, an unbeaten Bengal will have their confidence high when they take on Nagaland in their third Ranji Trophy Elite Group A match at the Nagaland Cricket Stadium here today.
The Laxmi Ratan Shukla-coached side, who will be playing their first away game of the Ranji season, are yet to be beaten after two fine outings against Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh.
“We have started the season well. We are here to play good, tough cricket. We will give our best. The boys will go out and express themselves,” said Bengal Coach L R Shukla.
After thrashing UP by six wickets in their opener, Bengal played out a thrilling draw against Himachal to gather nine points from two home games so far.
Come Tuesday, Bengal will be up against a Nagaland side, aiming to pull themselves up after suffering back-to-back big losses against Uttarakhand and UP in their previous matches.
With Abhimanyu Easwaran still not available, Bengal will be once again led by their senior pro-Manoj Tiwary, whose leadership skills in the first two games were hugely applauded by all.
In the batting department, the opening duo of Koushik Ghosh and Abhishek Das, who got some crucial runs under their belt in their second innings against Himachal, will aim to deliver once again to give their side a positive start.
Another top-order batsman Sudip Kumar Gharami, who slammed a fine 101 in the previous match, will be aiming to continue his good form.
The visitors will once again rely heavily on their experienced batting duo of Anustup Majumdar and Manoj in the middle order just like they did in their previous two games.
Both Anustup and Manni, after striking some hot form lately, will be raring to score more.
All-rounder Shahbaz Ahmed will aim to make it count both with the bat and the ball once again.
Spinners Pradipta Pramanik or Ankit Mishra might also be called in as second spinners depending on the pitch and conditions.
In the fast-bowling department, Akash Deep alongside Ishan Porel will lead their attack while the team management will have it tough to choose one from the talented Geet Puri, Ravi Kant Singh and Durgesh Dubey. (UNI)

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