Sadiq Kirmani’s half-century in vain……

Sadiq Kirmani’s half-century in vain, as Tigers scamper home in season opener

A responsible knock by Namma Shivamogga opener Sadiq Kirmani, who scored the first fifty of the fifth edition of the Karbonn KPL powered by Cycle Agarbathies, a 63-ball 69, was not good enough to stop hosts Hubli Tigers from registering a tense two-wicket win over Namma Shivamogga, in the opening match at the KSCA Rajnagar stadium, Hubbali, here on Saturday morning.

Hubli Tigers asked Namma Shivamogga to bat first, on an overcast morning with a pitch that offered some assistance to the bowlers upfront. Sreenath Arvind was the pick of the bowlers, taking 3 for 16 from his four overs.

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The batsmen started flexing muscles soon after they got their eye in. Kirmani hit the ground running with some handsome strokes, but Nikin Jose (37), holed out to long-off, where Stallin Hoover took a nice catch diving forward. His dismissal seemed to open the flood-gates for Shivamogga, who lost their next five wickets for a mere 46 runs. Stuart Binny (11), Pawan Deshpande (1), Zeeshan Ali (2), Siddharth (0) and David Mathias (5), all fell cheaply trying to up the ante.

However, a combative knock from Kirmani ensured that Shivamogga ended their innings with a modest 129 for 6.

In reply, the Tigers got off to a flying start with both Taha and Abhishek Reddy making full use of the fielding restrictions, though both batsmen departed for 13 and 23 respectively, after playing some entertaining shots.

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Left-arm orthodox spinner, A Kazi turned out to be Shivamogga’s lynchpin in the bowling department, picking up three for 23, and was complemented well by right arm off-spinner, Zeeshan Ali, who bagged one wicket for 21 runs.

Even though the Tigers middle -order showed vulnerability against spin, a heady mix of exuberance and maturity from Vinu Prasad (22) and Kranthi Kumar (7), steered the Tigers home with an over to spare.

It was hard going for Namma Shivamogga, and despite their bowlers, bowling a nagging line and length; it was the home side – Hubli Tigers who took the honors, amid much fanfare.

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S. Arvind was adjudged the Man of the Match, for his match-winning spell of 4-1-16-3.

All matches of the Karbonn KPL 2016 will be telecast live and exclusive on Sony ESPN SD and Sony ESPN HD Channels.

The tickets will be available at the Rajnagar Stadium in Hubbali and online on Book My Show at https://in.bookmyshow.com/sports/karnataka-premier-league

Official Karbonn KPL Website – www.kpl.cricket
Official Karbonn KPL Facebook Page – www.facebook.com/kplksca
Official Karbonn KPL Twitter Handle – @KPLKSCA
Official Karbonn KPL Tagline – #NammaKPL

About Karnataka State Cricket Association: The Karnataka State Cricket Association (formerly Mysore State Cricket Association) is committed to developing Karnataka as the premier cricketing state in the country. It aims to take the game to mofussil areas of the state for development at the grassroots level and to continuously promote the welfare of players. It was founded during the year 1933-34 and is affiliated to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). The association made steady progress from 1934 to 1959 when the Silver Jubilee was celebrated to coincide with the visit of the Australian team to Bangalore to play against the Combined Universities XI.

In the late sixties, the Association acquired its own cricket ground and the stadium now known as the M Chinnaswamy Stadium came into being. Bangalore became a Test Centre, and several memorable Tests and ODIs, including the 1996 World Cup quarter-finals, have taken place here. The Karnataka State Cricket Association has grown from strength to strength and today is one of the best-organized State Cricket associations in the Country.

by Ayan Acharya

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