Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy: TN and Karnataka have their tasks cut out

Hyderabad tops for now with 12 points and is the only team with a two-plus net run rate. Tamil Nadu and Karnataka are tied with eight points each but the latter’s positive run rate places it ahead.

Hyderabad has put itself in the pole position in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy South Zone inter-State T20 league.   -  K. Pichumani

Three rounds have been done with and two more left in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy South Zone inter-State T20 league which had a rest day on Wednesday. And its time to have a look at the prospects of the teams.

Hyderabad tops for now with 12 points and is the only team with a two-plus net run rate. Tamil Nadu and Karnataka are tied with eight points each but the latter’s positive run rate places it ahead.

Kerala (4 points) sits fourth, ahead of Andhra which also has secured the same points, with the run rate again deciding the placings. Goa (0) has been resigned to the last spot — sixth.

On Thursday, if Karnataka scores over Hyderabad, either team will be at 12 points with the net run rate separating the two.

Karnataka has to win by a big margin to nudge ahead of Hyderabad. In case Hyderabad wins, it’ll be secure atop with 16 points.

In the events that Karnataka and Tamil Nadu post victories — the latter plays Andhra — three teams will have 12 points each — Karnataka, Hyderabad and Tamil Nadu. But, again, Tamil Nadu has to muster a resounding win to better its net run rate.

If Andhra wins, it’ll get to eight points to draw level with Tamil Nadu. Kerala may join the two then, with a win versus Goa. If Goa notches its first win, and Andhra loses, then three teams will share four points each — Kerala, Andhra and Goa.

All this, with one more round to be played on Friday which could further change the equations.

The standings (read as team, points, NRR): Hyderabad 12, +2.133; Karnataka 8, +0.831; Tamil Nadu 8, -0.343; Kerala 4, -0.050; Andhra 4, -0.771; Goa 0, -2.147.