Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2015-16 January 16, 2016

Kerala upset Baroda in last-over thriller

Kerala 164 for 6 (Gomez 47*, Baby 44, Irfan 2-14) beat Baroda160 for 6 (Irfan 35*, Prasanth 2-15) by four wickets

File photo - Irfan Pathan's unbeaten 35 and two wickets went in vain for Baroda © BCCI

Kerala upset favourites Baroda, notching up a thrilling four-wicket win in a Group A clash of the Super League at the Wankhede Stadium. Chasing 161, Kerala were only 51 for 2 at the halfway stage.

However, with 26 needed from the last two overs, Padmanabhan Prasanth landed the crucial blows, changing his bat midway through the 19th over and clubbing Munaf Patel for successive sixes over wide long-off and long-on. Prasanth had also been influential with his left-arm spin, picking up two wickets while conceding only 15 runs from his four overs.

With the equation now down to 11 off the last over, allrounder Raiphi Gomez picked up two doubles before hitting a low full-toss from the left-arm seamer Rishi Arothe past a sprinting sweeper cover fielder. Gomez ended the match with a six over long-on to finish unbeaten on 47 off 21 balls.

It was the 45-run partnership between Gomez and Prasanth, which came off only 17 balls, that turned the match. But credit must also go to Kerala captain Sachin Baby, who stood solid and stitched a valuable 59-run partnership for the fourth wicket with Nikhilesh Surendran after Baroda seemed to have gained an upper hand with wickets in the first two overs for Irfan Pathan and Munaf.

Irfan had got Sanju Samson leg before with a beautiful inswinger off the first delivery of the chase before V Jagadeesh played on off a seaming delivery from Munaf. Rohan Prem, the tournament's highest run-maker, was Irfan's second victim, the Kerala batsman playing all over an angled delivery.

Irfan would have been most disappointed with the result, considering his all-round contribution to Baroda's cause. Baroda scored 69 runs off their last five overs, with Irfan remaining unbeaten on 35 off 18 deliveries. His 33-run partnership with Deepak Hooda (32 off 16) for the fourth wicket helped Baroda inject urgency into an innings that had slowed down in the middle overs.

Eventually, that phase of their innings proved crucial to the eventual defeat handed to them by Gomez and Prasanth.

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Unnikuttan on January 18, 2016, 11:40 GMT

    shame really after seeing Baroda win over Mumbai. 3 teams finish with 8 points and even net run rate was so very close. If Kerala had won under 15 overs, they would have been through to final

  • hkiran1 on January 17, 2016, 15:43 GMT

    Kerala lads on the move. Rohan and Sanju need to come good in the coming matches. Also our bowling got variety. Prasanth is good with the bat too!

  • kartcric on January 16, 2016, 10:15 GMT

    nallukunta,Hardik pandya can bowl at the speed of 130-138 kph.That's enough

  • Unnikuttan on January 16, 2016, 9:55 GMT

    I would not call this an upset nagraj as if you followed this competition closely Kerala have been red hot. They won like 5 matches on a trot beating the likes of Punjab who had yuvi and bhajji. Kerala has a good t20 team but beyond sanju ipl honchos seem to ignore others. I know raifi sachin baby etc were recruited but benched

  • spinkingKK on January 16, 2016, 9:51 GMT

    @sureshsrkmv, the current Indian captain and the current Indian selectors doesn't like Irfan for some reasons. Why he is not in the team is a question which baffles me all the time. He will rank among the topmost all-rounders in the world at the moment. Even in Dhoni's captaincy, whenever he got a chance, I have never seen him fail with the ball or bat. Dhoni will send Ashwin ahead of Irfan in the batting line-up and Irfan will be left with 1 or 2 balls to play and he will hit a six off the Australian fast bowler. I don't know what more does he wants. When he bowls, he will get an early wicket and keep it tight in his first spell. That's all you can ask for in the ODI cricket these days. In slog overs, everybody goes for some runs. I don't even remember Pathan getting hit badly in the slog overs either.

  • rakeshfrancis on January 16, 2016, 9:35 GMT

    Congratulations Team Kerala !!!!

  • virendra_s on January 16, 2016, 8:37 GMT

    hardik pandya looks a one for the future..

  • Nallakunta on January 16, 2016, 8:32 GMT

    Whatever performance Irfan pathan/ any other seaming allrounder shows, Everything is waste unless they bowl ata speed of 135+ according to Dhoni. As long as Dhoni is captain, Don't expect Seaming allrounders in the team as India dont have seaming allrounders who can bowl 135+ speed.

  • sureshsrkmv on January 16, 2016, 8:21 GMT

    Irfan pathan deserve a comeback to Indian national team, the seaming all rounder India were looking for he will be valuable for T20 world cup

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