Karnataka set to retain crown

Cricket SZ one-dayers

Karnataka set to retain crown

Karnataka dished out yet another commanding display to all but assure themselves of the crown in the South Zone one-day tournament for the Subbaiah Pillai Trophy here on Tuesday.

Karnataka, despite the absence of Robin Uthappa and regular skipper R Vinay Kumar who have joined the Indian squad for the last two ODIs against Sri Lanka, defeated hosts Hyderabad by five wickets in a high-scoring match.

With this win, Karnataka also booked their berth in the all-India knockouts for the Vijay Hazare Trophy of which they are the defending champions.

Chasing a challenging 295 for seven set by Hyderabad, the top four Karnakata batsmen struck quick half-centuries to seal the match for their side with 12 balls to spare.

Their fourth straight win has put them in a strong position to win the tournament. 

Going into their match against Kerala, Karnataka enjoy a healthy run-rate of +2.012 while their nearest contenders Goa (+0.142), who have three wins in four matches, not only need to win big against Hyderabad but also hope that Karnataka lose badly in their final outing.    

Openers Mayank Agarwal (70 off 68) and Australia-bound KL Rahul (53 off 58) set the tone for the chase with a 112-run first-wicket stand that came off 18.4 overs.

While Agarwal was the more aggressive among the duo, hitting nine fours and one six during his knock Rahul played the second fiddle striking four boundaries and one hit over the fence.

Soon after Rahul’s dismissal in the 19th over, Agarwal too followed suit 25 balls later at the team score of 127.

But new batsmen Shishir Bhavane (81 not out off 76) and Manish Pandey (56) took it from where Agarwal and Rahul had left off and continued to bat freely to keep Karnataka in the hunt. 

Bhavane and Pandey stitched 93 runs for the third wicket off just 84 balls to take Karnataka closer.

Brief scores: Hyderabad: 295/7 in 50 overs (Tanmay Agarwal 136, Hanuma Vihari 82, Ashish Reddy 51; Sreenath Arvind  4-41) lt to Karnataka: 300/5 in 48 overs (Shishir Bhavane 81, Mayank Agarwal 70; Amol Shinde 2-52). Kerala: 202/9 in 50 overs (Vishnu Vinod 39, Amit Verma 32, Sachin Baby 64; CV Stephen 4-46, D Shivakumar 2-42, B Ayyapa 2-46) lt to Andhra: 206/4 in 43 overs (KS Bharat 65, DB Prasanth 27 RK Bhui 48 n.o.). 

Tamil Nadu: 182 all out in 49.2 overs (KD Karthik 29, R Sathish 67; RT D’ Souza 3-36, SS Bandekar 3-43, SB Jakati 2-26) lt to Goa: 184/4 in 33.2 overs (AS Desai 68, SA Asnodkar 77). 

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