Jeshwanth blames it on poor batting

 Karthik Jeshwanth blamed Karnataka’s continued batting misadventures for their quarterfinal loss to Haryana at the Chinnaswamy stadium on Wednesday.

“Obviously, the batting,” the Karnataka coach replied when asked what went wrong, minutes after the six-wicket loss. “After making 151, it is difficult to come back. It was not a 150-run pitch. Harshal Patel bowled really well, putting it in the right areas. We did fight back – Binny bowled well and Aiyappa showed a lot of heart – but it was always going to be difficult. If we had scored 250 in the first innings like we did in the second, we would have been able to make a match of it.

“The problem is with batsmen getting out after getting set. We thought we had overcome it when we crossed 500 in the (second innings of the) last match. But with batting, you just don’t know when you lose it.”

Jeshwanth rued the absence through illness of Manish Pandey, through injury of S Arvind, and through national duty of R Vinay Kumar and A Mithun. “Manish’s absence made a difference to our batting, and three bowlers were also missing,” Jeshwanth conceded. “We had expected to reach the final, so it is a disappointment. Haryana is a team we were supposed to beat. We were also unlucky in this match; everything our batsmen missed took the edge.”

A delighted Haryana skipper Amit Mishra said he wasn’t surprised by the result. “We were confident coming into the match because our top-order was batting well and we were doing pretty well as a bowling unit too. “At the end of day two, the match was evenly poised,” the India leggie continued. “But we knew that the pressure was on Karnataka not to lose wickets quickly and at the same time score runs in a quick time. Our aim was to not give away easy runs and we struck to our plan. We were confident of chasing down any target between 150 and 170.”

Mishra, who sustained a finger injury while going for an abortive catch off his own bowling, said he should be fine in a day or two. The semifinal against defending champions Rajasthan, in Rohtak, will begin next Tuesday. “We are not looking much into the semifinals, but the pitch will be helping the seamers a bit,” Mishra offered.

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