On a comeback trail after the end of his spot-fixing ban, pacer Shanthakumaran Sreesanth, on Monday, picked up his first five-wicket haul in List A cricket in almost 15 years to help Kerala pull-off a three-wicket win over Uttar Pradesh in the Vijay Hazare Trophy in Bengaluru.
The 38-year-old, who was not shortlisted in IPL 2021 auction's final list, returned figures of five for 65 in his first List A game in more than eight years.
Sreesanth, who had returned to competitive cricket last month after his life ban was overturned, opened his account by dismissing opener Abhishek Sharma.
He then returned in the death overs to dismiss UP under 200 with wickets of skipper Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohsin Khan, Akshdeep Nath, and Shivam Sharma en route to his only the second five-for of his List-A career.
On his List-A return, the former India pacer, who has played 27 Tests, 53 ODIs and 10 T20Is, picked up two for 41 against Odisha on Saturday.
In reply, Kerala sealed the chase in 48.5 overs. Robin Uthappa (81 from 55 balls; 8x4, 4x6) and Sachin Baby (76 from 83 balls; 6x4, 1x6) gave the start before Jalaj Saxena (31) and MD Nidheesh (13 not out from six balls; 1x4, 1x6) sealed the chase with seven balls to spare.
This was Kerala's second successive win in Group C but they remained second in table behind Railways who thrashed Odisha by eight wickets at the M Chinnaswamy here to be ahead by net run-rate.
Defending champions Karnataka bounced back with a bang after their first-match loss with a 267-run rout of Bihar.
Skipper R Samarth led the charge with an unbeaten 158 from 144 balls (15x4, 1x6), while fellow opener Devdutt Padikkal smashed a 98-ball 97 (8x4, 2x6) in a commanding 153-run opening partnership after Bihar opted to bowl at the Just Cricket Academy.
The only blip was their talented youngsters Padikkal missing a century by just three runs after being castled by Rahul Kumar as he once again failed to convert his fifty.
After Padikkal's departure, Samarth took charge with Krishnamurthy Siddharth who chipped in with a quickfire 76 (55 balls; 5x4, 4x6) to propel them to a huge 354/3.
In reply, Karnataka dismantled Bihar for 87 runs in just 27.2 overs with opener Sakibul Gani being their top-scorer (37), while eight batsmen failed to reach double digits.
Prasidh Krishna was Karnataka's wrecker-in-chief (4/17) and had fine support from Abhimanyu Mithun and Shreyas Gopal who claimed two each.
Brief Scores: At Just Cricket Academy: Karnataka 354/3; 50 overs (Ravikumar Samarth 158 not out, Devdutt Padikkal 97, Krishnamurthy Siddharth 76) beat Bihar 87; 27.2 overs (Sakibul Gaini 37; Prasidh Krishna 4/17) by 267 runs.
At M Chinnaswamy Stadium: Odisha 230; 49.3 overs (Ankit Yadav 48; T Pradeep 3/54) lost to Railways 231/2; 44.3 overs (Shivam Chaudhary 81 not out, Pratham Singh 63, Arindam Ghosh 39 not out) by eight wickets.
At KSCA Ground 2, Alur: Uttar Pradesh 283; 49.4 overs (Akashdeep Nath 68, Priyam Garg 57, Abhishek Goswami 54; Sreesanth 5/65) lost to Kerala 284/7; 48.4 overs (Robin Uthappa 81, Sachin Baby 76) by three wickets.
Gujarat post second straight win in Vijay Hazare Trophy
Hosts Gujarat recorded their second successive win in the Vijay Hazare Trophy, beating Goa by eight wickets in an Elite Group A game in Surat.
Gujarat had started their campaign with a three-wicket win over Chhattisgarh.
Opting to bat at the Lalbhai Contractor Stadium, Goa were bundled out for 159 in 45.4 overs, with Gujarat's slow-left arm spinner Hardik Patel (3/34) doing the bulk of the damage.
Gujarat then chased the target in 27.4 overs with half centuries from Priyank Panchal (57 not out off) and Bhargav Merai (57 off 55 balls).
Goa were struggling at 41/2 after losing opener Aditya Kaushik (4), who was castled by pacer Arzan Nagwaswalla (2/31).
The other opener Ishann Gadekar (18) also failed to convert his start and became slow-left arm bowler Hardik's first scalp.
Gujarat kept making inroads and did not allow the opposition batsmen to settle down. One-down Snehal Kauthankar (23; 3x4) too failed to make it big and was trapped in front of the wicket by Hardik, leaving his side in a spot of bother at 50/3.
They lost half their side for 78 as skipper Amit Verma (15) and Suyash Prabhudessai (3) also fell cheaply. It was a patient 36 by wicket-keeper KD Eknath off 62 balls that took his team over the 120-run mark.
But pacer Nagwaswalla got his second wicket after dismissing Eknath as Goa slipped to 123/6 in the 39th over.
Darshan Misal, who came at number seven, top scored with 44, with four boundaries and that at-least helped them go past the 150-run mark, but was devoid of partners as Gujarat bowlers ran through Goa's lower order.
For Gujarat, all the bowlers played their parts to perfection. Pacer Chintan Gaja (2/31) and spinner Piyush Chawla (2/32) also grabbed two wickets each.
Gujarat began the chase on a strong note, with openers Dhruv Raval (37 off 26 balls) and Panchal adding 53 for the first wicket.
Then Panchal and Bhargav Merai were involved in a 92-run stand for the second wicket and took the game away from Goa.
In the other two league games, Baroda rode on skipper Krunal Pandya's unbeaten 127 to beat Tripura by six wickets, while Hyderabad defeated Chhattisgarh by seven wickets.
Brief Scores: Goa 159 (Darshan Misal 44; KD Eknath 36; Hardik Patel 3/34, Arzan Nagwaswalla 2/31) lost to Gujarat 162/2(Priyank Panchal 57 not out, Bhargav Merai 57; Deepraj Goankar 1/26, Amulya Pandrekar 1/29) by eight wickets.
At Kholavad Gymkhana Ground: Tripura 302/7 (Udiyan Bose 56, Bishal Ghosh 50, Manishankar Murasingh 42; Ninad Rathwa 2/37, Pradeep Yadav 1/19) lost to Baroda 303/4 (Krunal Pandya 127 not out, Vishnu Solanki 97; Pratyush Singh 1/19) by six wickets.
At CK Pithawala Ground: Chhattisgarh 242/7 (Harpreet Singh Bhatia 63, Ashutosh Singh 51; Mehdi Hasan 3/32, T Ravi Teja 2/60) lost to Hyderabad 243/3 (Tanmay Agarwal 122, Tilak Verma 60; Jiwanjyot Singh 1-2, Ashutosh Singh 1/31) by seven wickets.
Ashwin Hebbar hammers ton as Andhra upset TN
Ashwin Hebbar slammed an unbeaten 101 and powered Andhra to a seven-wicket win over Tamil Nadu in a Vijay Hazare Trophy Group 'B' match at the Holkar stadium in Indore.
Andhra captain G Hanuma Vihari won the toss and sent Tamil Nadu in to bat and the bowlers did very well to dismiss the opponent for 176 in 41.3 overs.
Hebbar was in cracking form and toyed with the opposition to attack to fashion a comfortable win.
Left-arm medium-pacer C Stephen (3/46), off-spinner Shoaib Mohammed Khan (3/24) and right-arm medium-pacer Girinath Reddy (2/33) struck at regular intervals to restrict a strong Tamil Nadu batting line-up, led by Dinesh Karthik.
Girinath Reddy struck an early blow by dismissing left-handed opener C Hari Naishaanth (4). The other opener N Jagadeesan (11), who scored a ton in the opening match, was bowled by Girinath to leave the team at 23 for 2.
Tamil Nadu, winner of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy recently, never really recovered from the early setbacks and were bowled out in the 42nd over.
B Aparajith was the top-scorer with 40, R Sonu Yadav contributed 37 while skipper Karthik (7) and M Shahrukh Khan (19), who was picked up for over Rs five crore by Punjab Kings in the IPL auctions, failed to sparkle.
In reply, Hebbar kept attacking despite losing fellow opener Kranthi Kumar (14), Karan Shinde (0) and skipper Vihari (2) to be 67 for 3. He found an able partner in Ricky Bhui (52 not out, 41 balls, 6 fours, 2 sixes) and the duo added 114 runs for the fourth wicket to power Andhra.
Brief scores: Tamil Nadu 176 all out in 41.3 overs (B Aparajith 40, R Sonu Yadav 37, R Sai Kishore 29, Shoaib Mohammed Khan 3/24, Stephen 3/46) lost to Andhra 181 for 3 in 29.1 overs (Ashwin Hebbar 101 not out, Ricky Bhui 52 not out) by seven wickets. Andhra: 4 points, TN: 0.
Jharkhand 217 for 9 in 50 overs (Utkarsh SIngh 51, Shahbaz Nadeem 45 not out, Siddharth Kaul 3/44) beat Punjab 215 all out in 45.5 overs (Mandeep Singh 68, Abhishek Sharma 56, Gurkeerat Mann 37, Rahul Shukla 2/34, Shahbaz Nadeem 2/36) by two runs. Jharkhand: 2 points, Punjab:0.
Madhya Pradesh 243 for 9 in 50 overs (Parth Sahani 68 not out, Aditya Shrivastava 52, Aditya Sarvate 3/39) lost to Vidarbha 246 for 6 in 48.5 overs (Ganesh Satish 47, Faiz Fazal 43, Aditya Sarvate 39 not out) by four wickets. Vidarbha: 4 points, MP: 0.