Iyer's fourth half-ton takes Blasters into play-offs

Namo Bandra Blasters required only 11.3 overs to reach the target of 126.

Shreyas Iyer in action for Namo Bandra Blasters against North Mumbai Panthers.

Shreyas Iyer's power packed unbeaten half-century and a good effort from his partner Eknath Kerkar delivered the best opening partnership of the T20 Mumbai League as Namo Bandra Blasters scored an emphatic 10-wicket win against North Mumbai Panthers at the Wankhede Stadium on Sunday.

Set a target of 126, Kerkar (50 not out) and Iyer (71 not out)  together thrashed 18 boundary shots (12 x 4s and 6 x 6s) to provide a great deal of entertainment to the faithful who showed up at the South Mumbai venue. Kerkar and Iyer’s unbeaten opening wicket stand enabled the Blasters  score its third win in five games and advance to the play offs.

The Panthers that won the toss and elected to bat, began with a solid 41-run stand between Yogesh Takawale and Shrideep Mangela. But once Mangela fell in the first ball of the sixth over, the Panthers never got going against the Blasters’  pace and spin combination in Atul Singh, Azhar Ansari, Karsh Kothari and Pravin Tambe.

India’s ODI batsman Iyer and Kerkar rattled off 69 in the six over power-play which opened up a clear path for a comfortable win.

The scores: North Mumbai Panthers: 125 for 9 in 20 overs (Sairaj Patil 26, Atul Singh two for 20, Karsh Kothari two for 35, Azhar Ansari two for 21, Pravin Tamble two for 16) lost to Namo Bandra Blasters 126 for no loss in 11.3 overs (Eknath Kerkar 50 not out, Shreyas Iyer 71 not out)