KPL 2017: Hoover, Gowtham take Belagavi to top spot
Belagavi Panthers got one over the defending champion, Ballari Tuskers, in the Karbonn Smartphones Karnataka Premier League 2017, powered by Cycle Pure Agarbathies, on Tuesday (12 September), securing a 25-run victory. Stalin Hoover scored a 43-ball 62 to help set Ballari a target of 155 before K Gowtham’s 4 for 23 helped restrict them to 129 for 9 at the S.D.N.R Wadiyar ground in Mysuru – the final match at the venue in this edition of the tournament.
The victory helped Belagavi jump past Hubli Tigers to the top of the table with a superior net run-rate.
Put in, Belagavi got off to a blistering start thanks to Hoover’s belligerence. He was dropped on 11 off Amit Verma, and it proved costly. To drive home the point, Hoover hit consecutive boundaries, including a six, off Bhavesh Gulecha in the next over. His partner, BR Sharath, fell to Gulecha, and K Gowtham (5) didn’t last long either, but Hoover just carried on, notching up his half-century off just 32 balls with a six off Anil IG in the ninth over.
Manish Pandey, at the other end, scored an adventurous 12-ball 24 before holing out to Anil. Two balls later, Hoover holed out as well, having scored a fine 43-ball 62. At that point, in the 13th over, Belagavi were 111 for 4. With his dismissal, the run-rate slowed down. S Rakshith scored a fighting 13-ball 14, but the rest of the line-up failed to back him up, all falling for single digit scores.
It meant Belagavi were bowled out for 154, with two balls remaining, Prateek Jain running through the tail to return 3 for 29.
The total didn’t seem too threatening at the outset, but Belagavi were excellent with the ball. Ballari took things slow, knowing the target wasn’t too daunting. Unfortunately for them, Belagavi dismissed their batsmen before they could do significant damage. Rohan Kadam (8) was run out, Amit Verma (4) mistimed one off the young left-arm spinner, Shubang Hegde, and Kunal Kapoor was stumped after excellent work by Sharath behind the stumps.
All the while, Pawan kept the scoreboard ticking, although not as fast as he would have liked. When CM Gautam (11), their in-form batsman, failed to get going as well, bowled by S Arvind, Belagavi knew it was their day. Ballari had renewed hopes when the big-hitting Abhinav Manohar hammered a 10-ball 21, but he holed out off Gowtham, who then had Devdutt Padikkal stumped off the very next ball.
It just wasn’t Ballari’s day, Pawan’s unbeaten 58-ball 64 going in vain.
Brief scores: Belagavi Panthers 154 in 19.4 overs (Stalin Hoover 62, Manish Pandey 24; Prateek Jain 3-29, Amit Verma 2-19) beat Ballari Tuskers 129 for 9 in 20 overs (KB Pawan 64*, Abhinav Manohar 21; K Gowtham 4-23) by 25 runs.
Man of the Match: Stalin Hoover (Belagavi Panthers)