Ranji Trophy: Karnataka suffer humiliating loss

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Dharmedrasinh Jadeja in action against Karnataka. PC: SCA

Rajkot, December 8: A record 20 wickets tumbled on the penultimate day as Karnataka suffered a humiliating 87-run loss against Saurashtra in their fourth game of the Elite Group A Ranji Trophy clash, here on Saturday.

Chasing a decent target of 179 on a challenging pitch at the SCA Stadium, Karnataka collapsed for a measly 91. Full credit to Saurashtra spin duo of Kamlesh Makvana (5/28) and man of the match Dharmendrasinh Jadeja (4/44) for leading their side to a convincing victory and take six points.

Karnataka are now placed fifth* on the table with 12 points from four matches while Saurashtra are topping the charts with 19 points from five games.

Having bowled out for visitors for 217 at the end of second day, Saurashtra were ahead with a lead of 99 runs. But Karnataka fought back through the spin troika J. Suchith (3/29), Pavan Deshpande (3/5) and Shreyas Gopal (3/10) to bowl out the hosts for 79 in the second innings – one of Saurashtra’s lowest scores in the domestic circuit.

With a small total to defend on a deteriorating surface that was evidently helping the slow bowlers, Saurashtra skipper Jaydev Shah, in his last game of the Ranji Trophy, smartly asked Jadeja and Makvana to lead the bowling attack.

The decision had Karnataka batsmen in trouble right from the first ball bowled in the second essay. It was a difficult deck to score as both struck from either ends to leave Karnataka tattering at 3/5 before the experienced Karun Nair (39) and Shreyas Gopal (27) 60 runs for the fourth wicket. The partnership on the minefield didn’t last long after Nair’s attempt to reverse sweep Makvana had him leg-before. His departure triggered a collapse and Karnataka recorded their first loss of the season.

The R Vinay Kumar-led team will next face Gujarat in Surat on December 14.

Brief scores: Saurashtra (I innings): 316 & II innings: 79 all out in 27.4 overs (Snell Patel 22, J. Suchith 3/29, Pavan Deshpande 3/5, Shreyas Gopal 3/10) bt Karnataka (I innings): 217 & II innings: 91 all out in 36.5 overs (Karun Nair 30, Shreyas Gopal 27, Dharmendrasinh Jadeja 4/44, Kamlesh Makvana 5/28) ny 87 runs.

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