Captain Mayank Agarwal’s unbeaten knock of 110 rescued Karnataka from a poor start to guide the hosts to 229 for five against Saurashtra in the Ranji Trophy semi-final on Wednesday (February 8). Sent in to bat, Karnataka were in some trouble, losing half their side for 112 in 40.3 overs. But opener Agarwal (110 not out) held one end together and in the company of wicket-keeper Srinivas Sharath (58 not out) steadied the innings with an unbeaten 117-run partnership for the sixth wicket.
Karnataka scored their runs off 87 overs before the umpires called stumps to the opening day’s proceedings. Agarwal’s patient knock came off 246 balls during which he struck 11 boundaries and a six, while Sharath faced 143 deliveries during his unconquered knock and hit four fours in the process.
Right-arm medium pacer Kushang Patel picked up two wickets, while Chetan Sakariya and Prerak Mankad accounted for one Karnataka batter each. The other wicket fell to a runout.
Karnataka did not have the best of starts as they lost opener Ravikumar Samarth in the sixth over, caught by Vishvaraj Jadeja off the bowling of Patel. New man in Devdutt Padikkal didn’t last long, caught by Sheldon Jackson off Sakariya’s bowling in the opening delivery of the ninth over. Agarwal and Nikin Jose (18) shared 47 runs for the next wicket before the latter nicked a Patel delivery to Harvik Desai behind the stumps in the 29th over.
A top class innings from a high class player. What a century @mayankcricket . Dear captain, you stood tall when the team needed you the most. Thank you for the rescue act #RanjiTrophy #KARvSAU #mayankagarwal pic.twitter.com/tZ9ObqcXCH
— Vishak G Shetty (@VishakGShetty1) February 8, 2023
Manish Pandey didn’t trouble the scorers much, becoming Mankad’s scalp and overs later Shreyas Gopal (15) became the victim of a run out as Karnataka slumped to 112 for 5. But Agarwal and Sharath joined hands and played sensibly without taking any risks to deny Saurashtra further inroads.
Brief Scores: Karnataka: 229 for 5 in 87 overs (Mayank Agarwal 110 batting, Srinivas Sharath 58 batting; Kushang Patel 2/64). (With PTI inputs)