BENGALURU: Karnataka were stunned by Uttar Pradesh, who beat the defending champions by nine runs via VJD method in the Vijay Hazare Trophy at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Saturday. On the back of some impressive hitting by Aniruddha Joshi, Karnataka managed to score 246/8. But, an unbeaten 61-ball 62 by Rinku Singh helped Uttar Pradesh inch closer to the target before rain stopped play in the 46th over and the game never resumed to help them collect full points.
Karnataka batsmen, once again, like in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy last month, failed to convert their starts. After being put into bat by Uttar Pradesh, they lost an early wicket in the form of skipper Ravikumar Samarth in the sixth over. Though Devdutt Padikkal took his time at the middle, he completed his half-century in 79 balls. KV Siddharth also scored a cautious 71-ball 38.
In fact, the scoring rate was quite slow as they reached their fifty in the 20th over. Karun Nair looked good, but was out for 33. Despite crossing the 30-run mark, none of the top-order players made a huge impact.
However, they only got a move on after Aniruddha walked to the batting crease. He looked positive throughout and dealt in boundaries, piling pressure on the Uttar Pradesh bowlers for the first time. His 68 from 48 balls, which comprised four fours and four sixes, played an important role in pushing Karnataka to 246.
With this total on the board, there was a serious need for the Karnataka bowlers to create early inroads. It did not happen. Despite the efforts, Karnataka bowlers were not able to break the opening partnership of Abhishek Goswami (54) and Karan Sharma (40) quickly as they managed to reach the 100-run mark in the 23rd over.
Both the openers were only back in the pavilion with the score on 102. And Uttar Pradesh slid to 150-4 as well, with spinners J Suchith, Shreyas Gopal and Karun nair scalping one wicket each to give hope.
Just when one thought Karnataka had some chance, Singh took the attack to the opposition and began dealing in boundaries. Samarth and his men were on the backfoot with Singh delivering the goods for the visiting team. In wicket-keeper Upendra Yadav, Singh, who hit seven fours and a six, found an able support as the duo were involved in an unbeaten 65-run partnership. Before the heavens opened up, they needed 32 runs from 28 balls.
Brief Scores: Karnataka: 246/8 in 50 overs [Devdutt Padikkal 52, Aniruddha Joshi 68, Shivam Sharma 3/40] lost to Uttar Pradesh: 215/4 in 45.2 ovs [Abhishek Goswami 54, Rinku Singh 62 n.o] by 9 runs via VJD method.