The Ranji Trophy Group ‘C’ match between Andhra and Kerala ended in a draw at the Y.S. Raja Reddy-ACA Stadium here on Tuesday, but not before the visitor made a valiant effort to post an outright victory. Chasing 209 for victory in 25 overs, Kerala was 192 for four in 24 overs when umpires called off play owing to poor light.

Andhra, also aiming for maximum points, posted a challenging target and the Kerala batsmen transformed the match into a thriller by taking the attack to the opposition. Both Jagadeesh (70) and Sanju Viswanadh (51) found the gaps and succeeded in pushing Andhra into a defensive mode with their big hits. With 12 balls remaining and 37 to get, Kerala managed only 20. But poor light took the sheen out of the contest.

Andhra garnered three points from the drawn encounter and finished with 24 points while Kerala got one to finish at 19. Both teams will remain in Group ‘C’ while Services and Jharkhand qualified for the next stage.

Resuming at 38 for no loss, Andhra had a disastrous first session losing the top order, including the in-form Amol Muzumdar. The Kerala medium-pacers went all out and with their accurate line and length, tormented the rival batsmen. Both openers Prashanth and K.S. Bharat played on the backfoot to tackle the fuller-length deliveries, only to be castled. Muzumdar was trapped in front by Sreesanth.

At tea, Andhra was 167 for six in 56 overs and was bowled out for 191.

The scores: Andhra — 1st innings: 329.

Kerala — 1st innings: 312.

Andhra — 2nd innings: D.B. Prashanth b Manu Krishnan 19, K.S. Bharat b Sreesanth 37, Bharat Reddy c Kodoth b Shahid 43, B. Sumanth c Kodoth b Manu Krishnan 0, Amol Muzumdar lbw Sreesanth 27, A.G. Pradeep c Fernandez b Shahid 29, Shahabuddin b Shahid 0, R. Pawar c Jagadeesh b Rakesh 17, Atchutha Rao c Jagadeesh b Shahid 5, Sk. Md. Basha (not out) 6, Vijay Kumar st. Kodoth b Shahid 1; Extras (nb-2, lb-5): 7; Total (in 77 overs): 191.

Fall of wickets: 1-45, 2-68, 3-72, 4-108, 5-137, 6-141, 7-172, 8-184, 9-185.

Kerala bowling: S. Warrier 17-6-55-0, M. Krishnan 14-6-22-2, Shahid 24-7-52-5, Rakesh 5-1-23-1, Sreesanth 14-7-23-2, R. Prem 2-1-11-0, R. Fernandez 1-1-0-0.

Kerala — 2nd innings: Sreesanth b Vijaya Kumar 7, Jagadeesh (not out) 70, A. Hegde c Prashanth b Shahabuddin 13, A.J. Rakesh c Pradeep b Shahabuddin 17, Sanju Viswanadh b Bharat Reddy 51, Robert Fernandez (not out) 27; Extras (b-2, lb-2, nb-1, w-1): 6; Total (for four wkts. in 24 overs): 192.

Fall of wickets: 1-14, 2-31, 3-55, 4-141.

Andhra bowling: Shahabuddin 6-0-49-2, Vijay Kumar 2-0-8-1, Atchutha Rao 7-0-57-0, R. Pawar 5-0-41-0, Bharat Reddy 4-0-33-1.

Andhra 3, Kerala 1.

Keywords: Ranji Trophy

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