Joshi sparkles for Diamonds

The Diamonds needed no more than 120 for victory against Mangalore United in the day’s second match after the latter hobbled their way to 119 for eight, batting by choice.

Everything was going swimmingly when the fiery Mayank Agarwal and Sunil Raju were in the middle of a 36-run third-wicket association, but once Agarwal fell playing one big stroke too many, the wheels came off sensationally.

The Diamonds slipped from 59 for two to 77 for six, Azghar Pasha outstanding during an unchanged spell of 4-1-13-2, when man of the match Joshi strode out and finished the game off as a contest, the victors reaching 121 for seven with three deliveries left for a three-wicket victory even though they had required 43 off the last five overs.

Having struck tellingly with the ball earlier in the evening when he finished with three for 22, the captain charted his team’s destiny with the bat too, slamming R Jonathan for three fours in the 18th over, which the Diamonds had started requiring 23 for victory. By the time Joshi (25, 15b, 4x4) was dismissed after dominating a 40-run (26b) seventh-wicket stand with BN Bharath, it was all over bar the shouting, DC Rajesh applying the finishing touches.

It was as if neither team knew how to step in and land the knockout blow. Both had just two wins in the whole of KPL I and it showed, but already, the Diamonds have two wins this season from three games, while United slipped to their third consecutive loss.

The United innings went nowhere after Karun Nair’s second-over dismissal, and Bharath Chipli’s debated run out – handed down by TV umpire Ravi Subramanyam – four deliveries later. Progress was slow rather than steady, only Jonathan’s workmanlike 39 (45b, 3x4) keeping them from self-destructing completely.

Joshi picked up the spoils, but the Diamonds were brilliantly served by the medium-paced duo of P Magizhendan (3-1-12-1) and DC Rajesh (3-0-13-1) as they choked United all the way.

Score Board

MANGALORE UNITED: Karun Nair c Bharath Kumar b BN Bharath 1, Bharath Chipli (run out) 1, N Nidhuvan c Agarwal b Magizhendan 11, R Jonathan b Joshi 39, Rohit Sabharwall lbw Joshi 21, Udit Patel c Goud b Raju 13, Vijay Chavan c Bharath Kumar b Rajesh 17, Azghar Pasha b Joshi 0, S Arvind (not out) 3, Daniel Sequeria (not out) 1. Extras (B-1, LB-5, W-6) 12. Total (for 8 wkts, 20 overs) 119.

Fall of wickets: 1-1 (Nair), 2-9 (Chipli), 3-36 (Nidhuvan), 4-67 (Sabharwall), 5-86 (Patel), 6-109 (Jonathan), 7-109 (Pasha), 8-117 (Chavan). Bowling: Sunil Joshi 4-0-22-3, BN Bharath 3-0-18-1 (w-6), P Magizhendan 3-1-12-1, DC Rajesh 3-0-13-1, Prasanna Patil 4-0-25-0, Sunil Raju 3-0-23-1.

SHAMANUR DAVANGERE DIAMONDS: Mayank Agarwal c Nair b Aleem 36, CM Gautam c Sabharwall b Aleem 1, Yere Goud (run out) 1, Sunil Raju c Jonathan b Pasha 23, BN Bharath (not out) 15, Devraj Koti lbw Sequeria 1, V Bharath Kumar c Nair b Pasha 5, Sunil Joshi c Nidhuvan b Arvind 25, DC Rajesh (not out) 4. Extras (LB-3, W-7) 10. Total (for 7 wkts, 19.3 overs) 121.

Fall of wickets: 1-4 (Gautam), 2-23 (Goud), 3-59 (Agarwal), 4-69 (Raju), 5-72 (Koti), 6-77 (Bharath Kumar), 7-117 (Joshi).

Bowling: S Arvind 4-0-19-1 (w-2), Aleem 3.3-0-14-2 (w-2), Daniel Sequeria 4-0-21-1 (w-1), Udit Patel 3-0-37-0 (w-1), Azghar Pasha4-1-13-2, R Jonathan 1-0-14-0.

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