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|Mahesh Patel B M||4.0||0||35||2||8.75|
The frequency of rain has finally dropped at Hubli and we saw some action in Karnataka Premier League after a long time. Belgavi Panthers and Bengaluru Blasters emerged victorious against Shivamogga Lions and Bellary Tuskers respectively. Up against each other are Mysuru Warriors and Hubli Tigers, both of which have played some excellent cricket in the tournament so far. Winner of this game will get to a position of advantage, as far as the points table is concerned and we expect both teams to come out all guns blazing in this important encounter.
The Warriors are one of the only two teams which were not affected by rain in the previous week. They've played just one game so far and have two points to their name. They are placed comfortably right in the middle of the table which could change pretty quickly depending upon how they fare in their upcoming matches.
In their previous and only match, the Warriors cruised to a seven-wicket win over Bellary Tuskers, thanks to a superb bowling effort by V Vyashak. Coming after a miserly opening spell to bowl into death overs, he was splendid as he gave away just eight runs and bagged four important wickets in the process. The Warriors were, therefore, able to keep Tuskers down to 145 for 8 which they eventually chased quite comfortably.
The Warriors were required to chase at a relatively easier run rate of 7.26 runs an over, the Warriors added 91 run in 60 balls for the second wicket partnership. Amit Verma and Bhatkal were particularly severe on Tuskers' bowling and brought their team within the touching distance before getting dismissed to Abrar Kazi. The useful contribution from their lower middle-order got them over the line with seven balls and seven wickets in hand.
Arjun Hoysala, Raju Bhatkal, Amit Verma, Shoaib Manager, Krishnamurthy Siddharth, NP Bhareth, Srinivas Sharath, SP Manjunath, Jagadeesha Suchith, Prateek Jain, Vyshak Vijaykumar.
The Tigers have been away from action due to the relentless rain we've had at Hubli. One of their matches was postponed to 31st August and one was washed out completely.
They, however, looked in pretty good form in the couple of matches they played earlier in the tournament. The Tigers managed to put up a decent effort on a bowler-friendly surface and scored 160 runs batting first. At one time, they were struggling to get to even 140, but excellent batting by Praveen Dubey and R Vinay Kumar got them to 160. Vinay Kumar's 13-ball 35 was particularly important towards the end which was the difference between a win and a loss.
After an excellent comeback with the bat, their bowlers did exactly what was expected from them. Kranthi Kumar and Mahesh Patel picked a couple of wickets each and were pretty economical with the ball. Although Darshan was a bit expensive, his two wickets played a vital role in handing Shivamogga Lions their first defeat in the competition.
Mohammad Taha, Abhishek Reddy, Sujith Gowda, RV Kumar, Kranti Kumar, Parikshith Shetty, Praveen Dubey, AM Kiran, MB Darshan, Suraj Seshadri, Mahesh Patel B M.
Finally, the action has returned to Karnataka with the resumption of KPL. We got a couple of games in yesterday with both being pretty much one-sided affairs. With both teams coming on the back of a win in their respective matches, a closer contest is on the cards. The Tigers have a better-balanced team and an experienced captain, which makes them favorites to win this important match and get closer to a semi-final spot.