Group C: Baroda eyes revival against high-flying Andhra

Baroda lacks experience in the bowling department, but bats deep. Andhra will go into the match as the favourite after almost snatching an outright victory over Tamil Nadu in the opener.

Baroda’s Yusuf Pathan has been in terrific batting form, scoring centuries in both innings in the opening match against Madhya Pradesh.   -  PTI

Andhra enters its second game on a high against Baroda after almost snatching an outright victory over Tamil Nadu in the season opener.

The young side led by Hanuma Vihari bowled with great discipline in bundling out TN for just 176 in the first innings and showed great character to come out of a tricky situation from 64 for five to post a score above 300.

In the final innings, Andhra almost chased down the target scoring at four runs per over, falling short by just 20 runs after running out of overs.

Andhra coach Sanath Kumar was a happy man ahead of Saturday’s Group C clash saying the team ticked almost every box in the opening game. “We played really well in all areas. Maybe we could have been more sharp on the field.” The coach also added, “In the first innings, after bowling them out we started thinking ahead of ourselves about the lead and that the wicket might turn. So that is one thing we want to avoid and have spoken about.”

Baroda in contrast come into the game on the back of a crushing eight-wicket loss to Madhya Pradesh despite Yusuf Pathan scoring tons in each innings.

The Baroda side is in a state of rebuilding after scoring just 10 points from eight games last year and edged ahead of Railways from getting the wooden spoon on net run rate. However, coach Atul Bedade felt that the loss in the opener was down to the inexperience of a young team, especially the bowlers.

“We did not do a lot wrong and we showed good depth in our batting with Atit Sheth scoring a century at number nine. But our attack is very new and inexperienced. So we worked on getting our bowlers to bowl in the right areas. We want to play positive and good cricket. ”

While Baroda bats deep with quite a few all-rounders including the Pathan brothers, the team is thin on pure bowlers and that is something the Andhra team coach is well aware and will want to exploit.

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