India Cements ‘A' to the fore

India Cements 'A' team with The Hindu Trophy.-K. PICHUMANI

Karthick and Prasanna put on 66 runs in the six Power Play overs to seize the initiative for India Cements ‘A' in the early phase of the match. Before they were separated, the duo had raised 94 runs in only 54 deliveries.

India Cements ‘A' got most things right as it overcame Chemplast Sanmar by 40 runs in the title clash of The Hindu Trophy Twenty20 tournament in Chennai recently.

India Cements ‘A' was given a blazing start by openers Arun Karthick (63) and Sportstar Man of the Final R. Prasanna (70) after the side was put in to bat at the M. A. Chidambaram Stadium. The right-handed Karthick and southpaw Prasanna forced the bowlers to change their line, and in the process, the two disrupted the rhythm of the Chemplast attack.

Karthick went after the bowling from the word go, piercing the infield on both sides of the wicket. Prasanna played the supportive role initially before changing gears. The duo put on 66 in the six Power Play overs to seize the initiative in the early phase of the match. Before they were separated, Karthick and Prasanna had raised 94 runs in only 54 deliveries.

India Cements ‘A' lost wickets in the final phase of the innings but Prasanna hung on to make valuable runs as the side reached a combative 178 for seven.

Then, India Cements ‘A' pacemen J. Kaushik and Palani Amarnath moved the ball under a cloud cover to make the early inroads.

Much of Chemplast Sanmar's hopes rested on the smooth-stroking Murali Vijay (30). When the opener was brilliantly held by S. Badrinath on the extra-cover fence off left-arm spinner V. Arun Kumar, India Cements ‘A' closed in on the trophy. Chemplast Sanmar had slid to 69 for five.

Indeed, India Cements' ground fielding and catching supported the side's bowling; captain Arun Karthick defied gravity at mid-off to send back Ajay Kudua off Kaushik.

Skipper R. Sathish biffed an entertaining 38 for Chemplast Sanmar, but it was too little too late for the side. For India Cements ‘A', Arun Kumar, quicker through the air and bringing about subtle changes in length, checked the flow of runs with his left-arm spin.

Kalpathi S. Aghoram, vice-president, Tamil Nadu Cricket Association, gave away the prizes.

Chemplast Sanmar received the S. Parthasarathy Trophy for being the runner-up.

The Scores

Final: India Cements `A' 178 for seven in 20 overs (K. B. Arun Karthick 63, R. Prasanna 70) beat Chemplast Sanmar 138 in 18.3 overs (M. Vijay 30, R. Sathish 38, V. Arun Kumar three for 19).