Kovai Kings through to TNPL playoffs

Kovai Kings will face Karaikudi Kaalai in the Eliminator in Dinidgul on Wednesday.

V. Akshay of Lyca Kovai Kings play a shot during the match against Ruby Trichy Warriors at M.A. Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on Monday.   -  R. Ragu

 

A strong and patient batting display helped Lyca Kovai Kings enter the playoffs in the second season of the Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL) here on Monday.

Set a target of 135 by Ruby Trichy Warriors, Akshay V. Srinivasan (34 n.o.) and Rohith R.’s (19 n.o.) unbeaten partnership of 55 runs for the fourth wicket guided Lyca Kovai Kings to a seven-wicket victory.

Kovai Kings will face Karaikudi Kaalai in the Eliminator in Dinidgul on Wednesday.

After Ruby Trichy Warriors won the toss and elected to bat, opener K. Bharath Shankar and skipper B. Aparajith fell in quick succession. It was R. Nilesh Subramanian and J. Kousik who built the innings for the Trichy Warriors. The duo shared a 78-run partnership off 62 balls for the third-wicket.

Nilesh, who looked in fine form, was dropped a couple of times. At 29, he was dropped by B. Anirudh Sita Ram. Later, he was dropped at point by Gowtham Thamarai Kannan K, when he was on 35. He went on to score 57 off 56 balls.

Dropped catches were a familiar sight during Trichy’s innings. Prabhu M. was dropped on 0 by L. Suryap Prakash. However, the fielder made up for the lost chance by taking a catch to dismiss Adithya Ganesh in the very next ball.

Harish Kumar S., who took the crucial wickets of Nilesh and Kousik, was the star performer with the ball for Kovai Kings. He ended with figures of 3-0-23-4.

Kovai skipper Murali Vijay was for a duck in the first over, caught at cover by his counterpart Indrajith. It turned out to be a maiden-wicket over from J. Kousik, sixth in this year’s TNPL and first at Chepauk this year.

Following Vijay’s dismissal, Suryap Prakash and Anirudh Sita Ram B. steered the innings for Kovai Kings. The batsmen were involved in 71-run off 56 balls partnership for the second-wicket.

Suryap Prakash was the first to depart. Anirudh tried to finish things for the Kovai, but he was bowled by K. Vignesh for 44.

With the required run-rate never out of reach, Rohith and Srinivasan finished the game for Kovai Kings in 18.4 overs.

Brief scores:

Ruby Trichy Warriors 134 for 7 in 20 overs (Nilesh Subramanian 57, Kousik J 43; Harish Kumar S 4 for 23) lost to Lyca Kovai Kings 135 for 3 in 18.4 overs (Suryap Prakash L 30, Anirudh Sita Ram B 44, Akshay V Srinivasan 34 n.o.; K. Vignesh 2 for 28) by seven wickets.