Hegde spells Karnataka's doom

Hegde spells Karnataka's doom

Abhishek Hegde’s patient knock powered Kerala to a comfortable four-wicket victory over Karnataka in thier opening all-India invitational Buchi Babu memorial cricket tournament at the Pachaiyappa College grounds on Sunday.

A day after Karnataka had posted a formidable 325 for eight in their allotted 90 overs in the two-day match, Kerala found their saviours in Hegde (135, 261 balls, 4x14, 6x1) and Sanju Vishwanath (92, 139b, 4x12) as they completed the victory by reaching 325 for six with seven balls remaining in the innings.

Chasing a daunting target, Kerala never looked in trouble as the 25-year-old opener Hegde put on a brave face and anchored the innings. Hegde found an able ally in Vishwanath, and the duo strung together a 172-run partnership for the second wicket, forming the base around which the victory was built on.

Following the loss of Hegde and Vishwanath, Kerala relied on Sachin Baby (39) and Raiphi Vincent Gomez (33 not out) to deliver, and they did that to perfection as they carried the team through just in the nick of time.

K Gowtham was the pick of the bowlers for Karnataka with the off-spinner returning figures of 2/67.

Karnataka will now face Gujarat at the SRMC Ground in their second and final league fixture, starting on August 21. Karnataka will need to win to retain any hope of making it to the quarterfinals.

Brief scores: Karnataka: 324/8 in 90 overs lt to Kerala: 325/6 in 88.5 overs (Abhishek Hegde 135, Sanju Viswanath 92, Sachin Baby 39, Raiphi Vincent Gomez 33 n.o.; K Gowtham 2-67).

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