Ranji Trophy: Sandeep's five-for keeps Kerala in the hunt

Sandeep Warrier
Sandeep Warrier completed his eighth five-wicket haul in first class cricket. File photo
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Mohali: Fast bowler Sandeep Warrier's five-wicket haul helped Kerala bowl out Punjab for 217 on day two of their Ranji Trophy Elite Group B Match at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium, here on Monday.

At stumps, Kerala were 127/3 and led the hosts by 31 runs with Mohammed Azharuddeen (76 batting) and skipper Sachin Baby (16 batting) holding firm.

Punjab, who resumed the day batting at 135/2, lost an early wicket as opener Jiwanjot Singh (69) was caught by Azharuddeen off Warrier's bowling.

In the 48th over, Sandeep struck twice as he dismissed Yuvraj Singh (8) and Gurkeerat Mann (0) with the total on 157.

As wickets kept falling like ninepins the other end, skipper Mandeep Singh (89) went on to score his 24th first-class fifty.

Towards lunch, wicketkeeper-batsman Gitansh Khera (2) was trapped leg-before by M D Nidheesh.

Mayank Markande (1) was the next to fall as he was run out by Basil Thampi and Punjab were left reeling at 169/7.

Mandeep Singh and Manpreet Singh Grewal (11) helped Punjab crawl past the 200-run mark before the latter was run out by Sanju Samson.

Then, Sandeep struck twice again as he dismissed Siddharth Kaul (6) and Mandeep Singh to claim his fifth wicket and bowl out Punjab for 217.

As Kerala came to bat, Manpreet stuck in the very first over as he castled Arun Karthick for a duck.

After putting on 75 runs for the second wicket with Azharuddeen, P Rahul was caught by Baltej Singh off Markande's bowling.

Sanju Samson's (3) poor season continued as he was caught by Jiwanjot off Kaul's bowling.

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