KPL 2017: Brilliant Joshi powers Shivamogga to second spot
Anirudh Joshi’s trailblazing 27-ball unbeaten 54 helped Namma Shivamogga to their second win of the Karbonn Smartphones Karnataka Premier League 2017, powered by Cycle Pure Agarbathies, against Bengaluru Blasters at the S.D.N.R Wadiyar ground in Mysuru on Monday (11 September). Joshi’s match-winning knock ensured Shivamogga toppled Bengaluru’s 142 for 6 with an over to spare, Shivamogga ending with 146 for 6.
The win lifted Shivamogga to second spot in the table. Bengaluru remain at the bottom, yet to get their first points on board.
Shivamogga’s chase got off to the worst possible start as the Bengaluru bowlers built dot-ball pressure and used it to chip away at the wickets. Nihal Ullal was dismissed for nought, stumped as he charged Mitrakanth Yadav in the first over. The quick-scoring Liyan Khan (10) was the next to fall, two overs later, Prasidh Krishna getting his number. R Jonathan was then unfortunate to be run-out without facing a ball, and Shivamogga were reduced to 17 for 3 within five overs.
Abdul Majid and Shoaib Manager set about reviving the innings, picking the gaps. Once Majid settled, the shots flowed – there was a mighty six over cow corner off Abhishek Bhat. He was fortunate to be reprieved thereafter, R Samarth dropping him on 10 off a tough chance. The 42-run stand was broken when a Manager (14) skier ended up down the fielder’s throat.
The course of the match changed after Joshi arrived though. The big-hitting all-rounder clobbered Sinan Abdul Khader in the 13th over, picking a massive 28 runs off it. There were three sixes and two fours in the over, just one of those fours going to Majid. Suddenly, Shivamogga were in the driver’s seat. There were boundaries off Prasidh in the next over, and though Majid was dismissed by Bhat for a 32-ball 40 in the 15th over, Shivamogga was always the favourite as long as Joshi was in the middle.
Bengaluru perhaps dropped the match when Joshi was dropped on 42 by Mitrakanth in the deep off Bhat’s bowling. He had hammered two fours in the over before that to edge Shivamogga closer to the target. He brought up the win with four through covers, getting to his fifty off just 26 balls en route, despite captain Akhil being run-out in the interim.
Earlier, Bengaluru’s batting woes continued after being put in, losing their openers within two overs. R Samarth (1) didn’t get his timing quite right, popping one to mid-off in Pradeep T’s first over, before the big-hitting M Vishwanathan was caught behind off Aditya Somanna in the very next over. Shishir Bhavane and Reddy then looked to revive the innings by picking singles and rotating strike, but the brief stand of 16 was broken in the fifth over, Abrar Kazi’s delivery staying low to clatter Bhavane’s stumps.
With Pavan Deshpande in the middle, Reddy finally had a steady partner. The two put away the boundaries when they could, but their primary mode of scoring was through singles. In fact, the first six of the day came only in the tenth over, Reddy lifting Sarfaraz Ashraf, the chinaman bowler, with a big heave over cow-corner.
It wasn’t until the 12th over when the two deemed it safe to attack. Deshpande was fortunate when an attempted drive flew off his edge to the fence off Akhil Balachandra. Reddy found the fence more intentionally, targeting Shoaib Manager in the next over for a couple of boundaries, including a six that ended up deep in the stands.
Bengaluru could have used Manjesh going into the death overs, but just as he looked on the up, he was sent on his way. Somanna had him trapped plumb in front as he looked to play around a straight delivery, and his 43-ball knock of 37 ended. Deshpande took that as a cue to charge, twice finding the fence off Ashraf. Rajoo Bhatkal then hit a maximum off Abrar Kazi, but Shivamogga had another breakthrough when Deshpande, having scored a 36-ball 47, miscued an attempted heave off Somanna in the penultimate over.
However, Bengaluru managed to boost their total further with Bhatkal hammering two huge sixes in the final two deliveries of the innings, ruining Pradeep’s figures while at it. It would have been enough had it not been for Joshi.
Brief scores: Bengaluru Blasters 142 for 6 in 20 overs (Manjesh Reddy 37, Pavan Deshpande 47; Pradeep T 2-35, Aditya Somanna 3-21) lost to Namma Shivamogga 146 for 6 in 19 overs (Abdul Majid 40, Anirudh Joshi 54*; Prasidh Krishna 1-15) by four wickets.
Man of the Match: Anirudh Joshi (Namma Shivamogga)