Bowlers power Karnataka into Ranji Trophy quarterfinals

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Karnataka player pose for a selfie after their victory over Baroda on Friday. PC: KSCA

Bengaluru, February 14: It took just three days for Karnataka to wrap up their last Ranji Trophy Elite Group A & B league clash against Baroda with a resounding eight-wicket win at their home ground on Friday.

On the penultimate day, Karnataka chasing a measly target of 149, cruised home in style with skipper Karun Nair (71 not out) and KV Siddharth (29 not out) unbeaten at the crease. With this victory, Karnataka sealed their semifinal berth.

Earlier in the game,  Karnataka asked the visitors to bat first and the decision from the home skipper turned fruitful with Baroda bowled out for a paltry 85. Ahmadnoor Pathan topped with 45 while the rest fell like nine pins. Baroda batsmen departed in regular intervals as Abhimanyu Mithun (3/26), K. Gowtham (3/25) and Prasidh Krishna (2/7) struck in tandem. There were five ducks while only Pathan and Deepak Hooda (20) managed to reach double digits.

In reply, Karnataka too struggled initially but contributions from Karun (47), KV Siddharth (29), S. Sharath (34) and Mithun (40) got them to 233. Baroda pacer Soyeb Sopariya bagged a five-wicket haul while Abhimanyu Rajput and Bhargav Bhatt took two apiece.

With a 63-run deficit, Baroda posted 296 in the second essay. Once again, Pathan (90) missed out on a fighting century while Deepak Hooda (50) and Abhimanyu Rajput (52) scored fifties each. This time, Prasidh (4/45) ran through their top-order while fellow speedster Ronit More took three and spinner Gowtham claimed two wickets.

Later, Karun and Siddharth steered their team to an outright win.

Rahul, Pandey to join squad

With a blistering season in New Zealand, star cricketers KL Rahul and Manish Pandey are more likely to join the state squad for the quarterfinal game to begin on February 20.

Brief scores: Baroda (I innings): 85 all out in 33.5 overs (Ahmadnoor Pathan 45, Abhimanyu Mithun 3/26, K. Gowtham 3/25, Prasidh Krishna 2/7) & II innings: 296 all out in 89.5 overs (Ahmadnoor Pathan 90, Deepak Hooda 50, Abhimanyu Rajput 52, Parth Kohli 42, Prasidh Krishna 4/45, K. Gowtham 2/99, Ronit More 3/68) lost to Karnataka (I innings): 233 all out in 72.5 overs (KV Siddharth 29, Karun Nair 47, S. Sharath 34, Abhimanyu Mithun 40, Soyeb Sopariya 5/83, Abhimanyu Rajput 2/17, Bhargav Bhatt 2/74) & II innings: 150/2 in 44.4 overs (R. Samarth 25, Karun Nair 71 not out, KV Siddharth 29 not out, Bhargav Bhatt 2/62) by 8 wickets.

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