Senior batsman Yuvraj Singh was dismissed for a first-ball duck as Kerala stunned Punjab by 46 runs in a quarter-final match of the Vijay Hazare Trophy here today.
Put into bat on a placid strip at the Port Stadium,Kerala piled up a commendable 320 for six riding on twin centuries by opener Vasudevan Jagadeesh (119) and middle-order batsman Sachin Baby (104 no).
In reply,Punjab were bowled out for 274 in 47.3 overs as Gurkeerat Singh (99) and Mandeep Singh (81)’s half centuries went in vain. Kerala achieved the upset win without their premier pacer S Sreesanth,which makes it even more praiseworthy. The duo of Jagadeesh and Baby added 139 runs for the fifth wicket after Kerala were reduced to 144 for four. While Jagadeesh hit eight fours and a six,Baby was in a smashing mood scoring his runs off only 70 deliveries with the help of 12 boundaries.
It was Baby’s pyrotechnics which helped Kerala cross 300-run mark.
In reply,Punjab were reduced to 24 for three in the first five overs with Yuvraj being dismissed by pacer Prasanth Parmeshwaran,who grabbed three for 40. Fast bowler Sandeep Warrier took two for 46.
Gurkeerat and Mandeep did raise visions of an improbable victory by adding 159 runs for the fourth wicket. But the former was unfortunately run-out one short of his three-figure mark. He hit 12 fours while Mandeep hit five fours and a six. Once the India ‘A’ player was dismissed at team’s score at 230,Punjab lost their lower half for the addition of another 44 runs. Kerala won by 46 runs to enter the semifinals.
Brief Scores: Kerala 320/6 (Vasudevan Jagadeesh 119,Sachin Baby 104,Yuvraj Singh 3/39). Punjab 274 in 47.3 overs (Gurkeerat Singh 99,Mandeep Singh 81,Prashanth Parmeshwaran 3/40).