Manish Pandey and Dinesh Karthik’s respective knocks were fused with the common theme of serenity and style. In the end, one was embellished with victory and the other sadly ended in defeat.
Pandey’s unbeaten 81 (92b, 7x4, 1x6) guided Karnataka to a seven-wicket victory over Tamil Nadu in the K.S. Subbaiah Pillai Trophy South Zone limited overs tournament match at the BITS Pilani Ground here on Sunday.
Pandey also had a strong ally in Karun Nair (64 n.o., 51b, 4x4, 3x6) while pursuing Tamil Nadu’s 250 for eight. Karun pummelled a six off Sunil Sam to help Karnataka finish with 252 for three in 45.2 overs.
Karnataka relished a rapid start through Robin Uthappa and K.L. Rahul and once the openers departed, Pandey strode in while Karnataka coach J. Arun Kumar said: “Finish the job.”
Pandey lived up to his coach’s dictum while Ganesh Satish fell to Baba Aparajith. Next-man Karun slog-swept a few and gradually Pandey replaced defence with disdain. He dented the cover boundary and drove and flicked with élan to whittle down the target.
Earlier, Karthik (84, 87b, 4x4, 3x6) rescued Tamil Nadu (53 for three) while speedster Abhimanyu Mithun bowled incisive spells. Karthik hoarded his singles and his 142-run fifth-wicket partnership with Vijay Shankar (59) lent substance to the Tamil Nadu innings. The alliance gained momentum after 30 overs as Vijay clattered a six off Stuart Binny and Karthik picked his fours off the seamers and hoisted spinners Ryan Ninan and Amit Verma but the day belonged to Karnataka.
Meanwhile at the Margao Cricket Club Ground, opener Ravi Teja’s unbeaten 111 (67b, 12x4, 4x6) guided Hyderabad to its first victory in the tournament’s current edition.
At Porvorim, Kerala found the right men — S. Sreesanth (four for 61 in 12 overs) and Robert Fernandez (85 n.o.) — to defeat Andhra by six wickets.
Monday’s matches: At Porvorim: Hyderabad vs Karnataka; At Margao: Kerala vs Tamil Nadu; At Vasco: Andhra vs Goa.
The scores: At Vasco: Tamil Nadu 250 for eight in 50 overs (Dinesh Karthik 84, Vijay Shankar 59, Abhinav Mukund 39, Abhimanyu Mithun three for 49) lost to Karnataka 252 for three in 45.2 overs (Manish Pandey 81 n.o., Karun Nair 64 n.o., Robin Uthappa 49, Ganesh Satish 35). Karnataka (4 pts), Tamil Nadu (0).
At Porvorim: Andhra 256 for six in 50 overs (K.S. Bharat 74, J.S. Krishna 61, Prashanth Kumar 41, S. Sreesanth four for 61) lost to Kerala 260 for four in 46.2 overs (Robert Fernandez 85 n.o., R.V. Gomez 68 n.o., Rohan Prem 42, Sachin Baby 29). Kerala (4), Andhra (0).
At Margao: Goa 225 for seven in 25 overs (Swapnil Asnodkar 70, Sagun Kamat 63, Manvinder Bisla 40, Akash Bhandari two for 36) lost to Hyderabad 228 for two in 23 overs (Ravi Teja 111 n.o., Akash Bhandari 78). Hyderabad (4), Goa (0).