Deshpande, Aravind powers Karnataka into Quarters

VarunDikshit

Chennai, February 3: Sreenath Aravind’s four- wicket haul and Pawan Deshpande’s quick fire 32 helped Karnataka notch up an easy victory against Goa in their final league match of the Syed Mushtaq T-20 tournament at the M.A. Chidambaram stadium here.

After losing their opening match against Tamil Nadu, Karnataka won four consecutive matches to top South Zone ., Goa finished at the bottom..

After winning the toss, Goa captain SK Kamat elected to bat. Goa suffered an early setback after losing Kamat in the forth over, but former Rajasthan Royal opener Swapnil Asnodkar and Kennan Vaz steadied the ship. At 80–3 in 12th over, Goa looked set for a big score. However, a couple of wickets in a span of four deliveries triggered a collapse.

Seven Goa batsmen reached double figures with Asnodkar scoring 34, the highest.

Chasing a modest total of 120, Karnataka never looked in a spot of bother. Promoting himself up the batting order as an opener, Captain Vinay Kumar played a handy knock of 34 in 25 balls with 5 fours and a six. From the start, Karnataka had net run rate in mind in order to top the group chart and went hard at the bowling. However, Mayank Agarwal , looking to up the run rate,threw his wicketby slashing a ball wide outside off to third man.

K Gowtham and Vinay Kumar provided stability to the chase with a partnership of 41 runs. The partnership was broken when left-arm spinner Pandrekar, introduced in the sixth over, got the price scalp of K. Gowtham on his very first ball

Dismissal of Gowtham brought young sensation, Karun Nair, to the crease. The young batsman got a big ovation from fifty odd people who rose from their seats to welcome India’s second triple centurion in tests (This seems to say only 50 of those present rose and clapped). However, the crowd was disappointed as Nair got out scoring 4 runs after edging a tossed up delivery from Pandrekar.

The southpaw (cliché) Pavan Deshpande replaced Nair at the crease and found the meat of the bat from the very first ball. He smashed Pandrekar and Narvekar in the cow corner and long on region and scored 32 runs of 13 balls at a strike rate of close to 250 in almost no time.

Deshpande, who scored the winning run with an elegant flick on the leg side, has made 128 runs at a strike rate close to 200.

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