Karnataka end winless streak

Karnataka end winless streak

Shreyas Gopal followed up his 3-wicket haul with an an unbeaten 34 to guide Karnataka to six-wicket win over Vidarbha at Alur on Sunday. DH Photo/ Srikanta Sharma R

The Karnataka bowling, which was at the receiving end in the last couple of games, finally came into its elements as the defending champions brushed aside Vidarbha by six wickets to notch their first win of the Vijay Hazare Trophy on Sunday.

In the Group ‘A’ game at the Alur 2 ground, Vidarbha’s shoddy batting saw them slump to 125 all out in 36.2 overs. Karnataka, after a minor hiccup, knocked down the target in 32.3 overs. Shreyas Gopal executed his role of an all-rounder to perfection to help Karnataka muster four points.

The leg-spinner (3/13), who triggered a midldle-order collapase, played a handy role with the bat. Shreyas (34 not out) forged an unbroken stand of 68 runs with Mir Kaunain Abbas (35 not out) for the fifth wicket as Karnataka recovered from 61 for four.

The hosts, having suffered three defeats in five games, are way behind in the knockout race. Shreyas felt this kind of clinical effort should have come a bit earlier.

“To be honest we failed in all departments early on in the tournament," he admitted. "It hurts when you look back. At the same time, I feel it’s not that we were completely poor in those matches. If you look at the result, it gives a picture that we were beaten badly but we just lost a few moments and had those moments gone in our favour, we would have been in a better situation,” Shreyas explained.

Manish Pandey’s men, with six points, are placed sixth in the table and face Railways at the M Chinnaswamy stadium on Thursday.

Wicketkeeper Sharath B R, filling the shoes of the experienced C M Gautam, showed fine promise with two brilliant catches. In the eighth over, he dived towards his right to pocket a single-handed catch to dismiss opener Sanjay Ramaswamy off Abhimanyu Mithun (1/24).

Sharath was in the picture again in the 32nd over. The 21-year-old showed fine technique to grab a tough two-handed catch towards his right that saw the downfall of the experienced Ganesh Satish (50, 68b, 4x4, 1x6) off Vinay Kumar (2/20).

The Vidarbha batsmen found it tough to read Shreyas. Shreyas foxed Apoorv Wankhade with a googly to trap him in front. Left-handers Ravi Jangid and Shrikant Wagh struggled to score off Shreyas and soon departed, edging him behind the wickets. K Gowtham (3/34) maintained the pressure from the other end.

In response, Karnataka experimented with their batting order. In the absence of regular opener Mayank Agarwal, M G Naveen (23) opened with Abhishek Reddy (19).

At 61 for four, skipper Pandey stayed back as Shreyas was pushed up. In the end, the total was too small for Vidarbha to spring a surprise.      

Mumbai win

At Alur 3 ground, Suryakumar Yadav, fighting cramps, slammed an unbeaten 123 (103b, 16x4, 3x6) to guide Mumbai to a thumping six-wicket victory over Himachal Pradesh.


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