Vijay Hazare Trophy: Solitary win not enough for Kerala

The win failed to prevent Kerala from finishing at the bottom of the group.

Vishnu Vinod scored 98-ball 93 which included 10 fours and three sixes.   -  V. Ganesan

Kerala ended its dismal run in the Vijay Hazare Trophy with a 42-run victory over Himachal Pradesh at the Barabati Stadium here on Monday. The win failed to prevent Kerala from finishing at the bottom of the group. Tamil Nadu topped the group followed by Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Tripura and Himachal Pradesh.

Full Scorecard

Opting to bat, Kerala put up a competitive total of 297 with contributions from Vishnu Vinod and Mohammed Azharuddeen at the top. The openers came up with a partnership of 147 runs in 24.1 overs with the talented Vinod cracking a 98-ball 93 that included ten fours and three sixes.

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Azharuddeen, who has been in fine nick in this tournament, hit a 66-ball 73 with nine fours and two sixes. Their association gave Kerala the platform to plot Himachal Pradesh’s defeat from. The team also gained from useful knocks by Sanju Samson (51 off 44 balls with five fours and two sixes) and skipper Sachin Baby (41 off 48 balls with five fours).

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The in-form opener Prashant Chopra scored a 67-ball 50 (eight fours) but the cheap dismissals of Ankush Bains, Amit Kumar and Ajay Rana saw Himachal Pradesh falter in its chase. In the middle order, Sumeet Verma (59), Ankit Kaushik (59) and Ekant Sen (43) looked to swing the match Himachal Pradesh’s way but Kerala hung on to emerge with a win.

 

Off-spinner Fabid Ahmed claimed four wickets to inspire Kerala’s victory with help from Sandeep Warrier, K. S. Monish and Vinod Kumar, who bagged two wickets each.

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