Rajkot: Kerala lost the second match of the Vijay Hazare Trophy cricket tournament. In Group D, Madhya Pradesh beat Kerala by 40 runs. Batting first, Kerala were all out for 289 in 49.4 overs to reach the target of 330 set by Madhya Pradesh. Venkatesh Iyer, who scored a century and took three wickets, gave Madhya Pradesh the victory.
Madhya Pradesh won the toss and elected to bowl. In the second over, opener Siddharth Patidar (0) was caught by Manu Krishnan in front of the wicket, but then Abhishek Bhandari and Rajat Patidar joined the crease to save Madhya Pradesh. The two forged a century partnership.
Vishnu Vinod clean bowled Abhishek while the team score was 101. Soon after, Vishnu returned the silver and struck a double blow to Madhya Pradesh. Both the batsmen left the crease with 49 runs each. But from there the course of the game changed. With Venkatesh Iyer and Shubham Sharma at the crease, Madhya Pradesh jumped. Venkatesh scored 112 off 84 balls with seven fours and four sixes while Shubham scored 82 off 67 balls with nine fours and a six. Madhya Pradesh scored 329 for nine in 50 overs.
For Kerala, Vishnu Vinod took three wickets while Basil Thampi took two wickets. Manukrishnan, Nidheesh and Rohan Kunnummal took one wicket each.
Openers Rohan Kunnummal and Mohammad Azharuddin gave Kerala a good start as they batted in reply with a target of 330 runs. Both added 68 runs for the first wicket. Azharuddin Karthikeyan Singh, who scored 34 in the 10th over, returned with a wicket. Later, Sanju returned to the crease with just 18 runs. Later, Rohan and Sachin Baby joined Kerala at the crease. Rohan hit 66 off 76 balls with seven fours and a six, while Tendulkar hit 66 off 66 balls with two fours and three sixes.
But with the departure of Tendulkar and Rohan, Kerala smelled danger. Only Jalaj Saxena, who scored 34, was able to hold on later. Soon after, Kerala were all out for 289 in 49.4 overs. For Madhya Pradesh, Puneet took four wickets while Venkatesh Iyer took three.
This is Kerala’s first defeat in the tournament. In the first match, Kerala defeated Chandigarh by six wickets.
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