Goa maintain perfect record with last-ball six
Goa ended the South Zone leg of their campaign with a perfect record, beating Hyderabad by two wickets to register their fifth win in five games. They did so in spectacular fashion, with Amit Yadav hitting Pragyan Ojha for six when Goa needed five runs to win from one ball. It was Yadav's fifth six in a blistering 15-ball 38, and his second of the over, which had begun with Goa needing 14 to win.
Hyderabad batted first and made 149 for 7, with opener DB Ravi Teja scoring 48 and No. 6 Amol Shinde tonking 28 off 13 balls late in the innings. Goa's seamers took the bulk of the wickets, with Harshad Gadekar, Gauresh Gawas and Lakshay Garg picking up two each.
Goa opener Sagun Kamat scored his fourth half-century in five matches, and held their innings together at the start of their chase even as wickets fell around him. Goa, at one stage, were 56 for 6. Kamat fell for a 44-ball 56, after he had put on 34 with Gadekar. Goa, at that point, needed 51 runs from 28 balls, and Yadav walked in to provide the thrust they so desperately needed. When Gadekar was out for 30 in the last over of the innings, Goa needed six runs from two balls. In came Garg, who took the all-important single to bring Yadav on strike.
Kerala joined Goa in the all-India phase of the tournament, after beating Andhra by nine wickets. They did so in comprehensive enough manner - they won with 63 balls remaining - to gain a healthy boost to their net run-rate, but that proved unnecessary in the end, after Tamil Nadu lost to Karnataka.
Having chosen to bowl, Kerala rolled Andhra over for 69, with medium-pacer Basil Thampi - playing only his second Twenty20 match - and left-arm spinner Padmanabhan Prasanth picking up three wickets each. Andhra could have folded for even less were it not for D Shivkumar's 14-ball 20, the only two-digit score in their innings.
Kerala had no trouble in knocking down their target, with openers Vishnu Vinod and KJ Rakesh sending them on their way with a 63-run partnership. Rakesh was run out for 29, but Vinod remained at the crease till the end to finish unbeaten on 31.
A four-wicket haul from part-time legspinner Amit Verma sent Tamil Nadu hurtling to 87 all out and hurtling out of the tournament, as Karnataka ended their campaign with a consolation 35-run win that took them off the bottom of the South Zone table.
Sent in to bat, Karnataka scored 122 for 7, with six of their batsmen getting into double-figures but none of them getting past 22. Sunil Sam was Tamil Nadu's most successful bowler, with figures of 2 for 27, while fellow seamer Yo Mahesh and offspinner M Prabhu took a wicket apiece.
Tamil Nadu were four down at the end of their powerplay overs, before B Indrajith and Vijay Shankar staged a mini-recovery with a brisk 22-run fifth-wicket stand. Then, Verma got to work. Starting with his dismissal of Indrajith, Tamil Nadu lost five wickets - three to Verma, two to run-outs - for the addition of just seven runs in the space of 10 balls. Tamil Nadu's tenth-wicket pair then added 17, before Verma dismissed Sam to finish with figures of 3.1-1-2-4.