Tamil Nadu recovered a lot of ground in the final hour on the opening day of their three day Coca Cola Trophy (under-25) tournament final against Kerala at the Maharaja Jayachamarajendra Wodeyar Sports Complex in Bangalore on Saturday.
Kerala were 188 for two in the 77th over but then in the space of 12 overs, they lost four wickets for 20 runs to slide to 208 for six - which is there they finished at stumps.
Put in to bat, Kerala lost an early wicket when their in form opener MP Sorab was caught by Subash Raj off Shrinivas for 10 with the score on 29. But the other opener Varun Girilal and wicketkeeper CM Deepak added 78 runs for the second wicket off 30.4 overs through careful batting. Girilal was then out stumped by Vasudevan off Ganesh Kumar for 64. He faced 133 balls and hit eleven of them to the ropes.
Deepak and SK Nair then continued the recovery process by adding 81 runs for the third wicket off 35.2 overs. While Deepak continued to bat in dogged fashion, Nair was a bit more aggressive, hitting 44 off 97 balls with five fours.
Just as Kerala were proceeding along smoothly, things started happening. Left arm spinner Raghuram dismissed Nair and skipper NA Kudua with successive deliveries. A little later, Deepak's long vigil came to an end when he was caught by Raghuram off Ganesh Kumar for 48. He batted 296 minutes, faced 226 balls and hit six fours. Shortly before close, Nambiar was bowled by Velmurugan for 14 and Kerala had lost the advantage that their top order had given them.
The match started 30 minutes late due to a wet spot on the pitch.