Karnataka beat Punjab, defend Vijay Hazare Trophy
Ahmedabad: Karnataka beat Punjab by a massive margin of 156 runs at the Sardar Patel Stadium yesterday to defend their Vijay Hazare Trophy.
Chasing Karnataka's mammoth total of 359/7 in 50 overs, Punjab were bowled out for 203.
It was a good toss to lose for the defending champions who had the most fantastic start with opener Robin Uthappa (87) and man of the match Mayank Agarwal (125) striking a significant 162-run opening wicket partnership.
The partnership provided the impetus and platform to Karnataka to put on a big score. After Uthappa got out, Agarwal went on to score his blistering century which had 10 boundaries and three sixes.
His 125 came only in 100 balls.
Karun Nair (86) and Manish Pandey (40) also struck important partnerships to take the team's total to well beyond the 300-run mark.
Though Karnataka lost several wickets towards the end, the damage had already been done.
Baltej Singh and Sandeep Sharma took three wickets apiece for Punjab but were overall expensive.
In reply, Punjab had a poor start with Manan Bohra (5) getting out with the team score at 9. However, Amitoze Singh (46) and Mandeep Singh (76) combined well to put an important 82-run second wicket partnership.
However, after the duo got out, Karnataka bowlers kept taking wickets at regular intervals with Abhimanyu Mithun ending up with three wickets. Eventually Punjab were bowled out just after they managed to cross 200 runs.
Brief scores: Karnataka 359/7 in 50 overs (Mayank Agarwal 125, Robin Uthappa 87, Karun Nair 86; Baltej Singh 3/59, Sandeep Sharma 3/68) beat Punjab 203 all out in 38.2 overs (Mandeep Singh 76, Amitoze Singh 46; Abhimanyu Mithun 3/37).