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The first matches of the Ranji Trophy will be played in Goa, and the offence will need to show more bite against Kerala.

PANAJI

Goa will need their bowling unit to perform as a collective unit in order to stop high-flying Kerala in their fourth-round Ranji Trophy Elite ‘C’ group encounter, which will begin at St. Xavier’s KCA Cricket Ground in Trivandrum on Tuesday. Goa’s openers will also need to be among the runs in order for them to have a chance of winning.

Goa comes into this match with six points on the board after playing Karnataka to a draw in Porvorim and rejecting the attempts of the visitors to take the match by an emphatic victory. If Goa hopes to continue their run at one of the top two spots in Group ‘C’, they will need to put forth a performance that is significantly more improved than the one they turned in against Kerala. Only then will they be able to compete on an even playing field with their opponents and keep their chances alive. On the other hand, Kerala defeated Chhattisgarh by an emphatic eight-wicket margin on the same field where the match took place.

The onus is on Goa’s seasoned openers, Amogh Desai (104 runs in 5 innings) and Sumiran Amonkar (110 runs in 5 innings), to provide a strong platform for their team. Goa will need them to perform. The pair have had an unimpressive run thus far in their First Class season, and they will be put under pressure as a result. In their most recent match, which took place away in Jamshedpur, both teams achieved a first-innings score of 41 during their respective innings. This was the Goa innings in which the duo put up their sole significant opening partnership of 78 runs this season, although they were to leave within 5 runs of each other after scoring their respective individual high scores.

Suyash Prabhudesai

On the other hand, one-down Suyash Prabhudesai has been doing well, and skipper Darshan Misal is also in fine nick. This is a cause for optimism. Misal took the initiative with a tenacious 95 against Karnataka, while Suyash stroked superb fifties in both of his essays (87 and 61*). Misal led from the front.

The Goa bowling attack seemed to be considerably below average in their most recent match, and the whole Goa team will need to play well if they are to compete with the formidable batting unit of Kerala. While Misal’s spin twin, Redkar, needs to rebuild the magic that he showed in the first two games of the season, he had a pretty decent outing with the ball in the most recent game. Misal had a reasonably good outing with the ball in the most recent game. Garg, the pace spearhead, will need to demonstrate greater discipline and potency, while Tendulkar will need to bowl with a consistent line and length in order for them to be able to worry the opposition in their own conditions, especially with the new ball.

In light of the fact that circumstances are favourable for spinners, it is expected that Goa will replace pacer Felix Alemao with right-arm off-break Shubham Desai for his second Ranji game. It is expected of Lad to take on extra responsibility, particularly with regard to his helpful off-breaks.

Sanju Samson

Even though Kerala’s batting order seems to be rock strong, Sijomon Joseph will be the stand-in captain for the team since Sanju Samson will be representing India in the match. At this point of their Ranji competition, the veteran all-rounder and professional Jalaj Saxena has taken the most wickets (26), making him the leading wicket-taker. The slow bowler got returns of 5/48 and 6/75 in their most recent match in Thumba against a strong Chhattisgarh team and would be yearning for a repeat performance in the next match.

In an interview with ‘The Goan,’ Goa head coach Mansur Ali Khan acknowledged that Kerala would be a difficult side to defeat at their own stadium. “The cricket team from Kerala has been playing well, and they have also won two matches outright. The fact that the surface in Trivandrum is dry, hot, and humid bodes well for the spinners who will be playing there. Kerala is well prepared for this, and in their most recent match, which took place at St. Xavier’s field, they defeated Chattisgarh by playing four spinners and winning the match.”

In the meanwhile, the head coach of Kerala’s team, Tinu Yohannan, believes that Goa would not be an easy opponent. “Goa has undergone significant reconstruction during the last several years. There have been several talented players that have been removed from the game in recent years. In the most recent few seasons, Goa has shown a great deal of character. In the beginning of this season, we competed against them in the Vijay Hazare Trophy. My impression was that they are a battling side that is difficult to defeat under any circumstances. They are harmonious when considered as a whole entity. Goa, in the not too distant future, provided that its administration stays in place, has the potential to become a strong contender in the nation “Yohanan asserted

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