Pawan dropped for Delhi match

Barring opener KB Pawan, the under-performing Karnataka batsmen have survived the State selectors’ wrath after the J Abhiram-led committee retained rest of the players for their fifth Ranji Trophy Group ‘B’ match against Delhi at the Chinnaswamy Stadium from Dec 8-11.

No replacement has been given for for Pawan, effectively meaning KL Rahul will get his first match of the season. Karnataka will also be bolstered by the return of Abhimanyu Mithun. The right-arm quick missed Karnataka’s last two matches against Uttar Pradesh and Odisha. While Karnataka conceded lead against UP in an away match, they crashed to a shock 65-run loss against Odisha at home.

Pawan, however, will be part of Karnataka U-25 squad that will play their semifinal match of the Col CK Nayudu Trophy match.  The R Vinay Kumar-led side is languishing at seventh place with just five points from four matches.

Dravid’s pep talk

Former India captain Rahul Dravid dropped in during Karnataka’s practice session at the KSCA ‘B’ ground on Monday and gave a pep talk to the players. A keen follower of Karnataka’s fortunes even when he was away discharging his national duties during his playing days, Dravid spoke of the need to look ahead.

The right-hander, it was learnt, advised the players to forget their past performances and treat the next set of four games as a fresh start. 

The squad: R Vinay Kumar R (capt), Robin Uthappa, KL Rahul, Ganesh Satish, Manish Pandey, CM Gautham (wk), Kunal Kapoor, Stuart Binny (vice-capt), A Mithun, KP Appanna, HS Sharath, Amit Verma, SL Akshay, SK Moinuddin. Batting coach: J Arun Kumar; Bowling coach: Mansur Ali Khan; Physio: Shravan; Trainer:  Vivek Ramakrishna; Video analyst: Santhosh; Manager: J Abhiram.

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