Mysore, Aug 31: Mangalore United held their nerve to clinch a 4-run victory over Bijapur Bulls after Karun Nair's superb unbeaten 100 off 62 in Match 5 of Karbonn Smart Karnataka Premier League (KPL) here today.
Bulls needed 18 off the final over bowled by paceman Ronit More but failed to get the required runs despite two no-balls from the bowler. Bulls were chasing 176 in 20 overs.
Bulls' run-chase was off to a bad start when last match's hero R Samarth fell for a duck on the second ball of the innings. However, Suraj Sampath (48), Kunal Kapoor (41), KC Avinash (28) and MG Naveen (22) gave them hope. In the end it was left to Abhimanyu Mithun (22) but his run out off the fourth ball in the final over sealed their chances.
This was Mangalore's second successive win after having won the tournament's opener against Rockstars on Thursday (August 28). Bulls suffered their first defeat in two matches.
Nair's ton powers Mangalore to 175/1
Nair blasted a 62-ball 100 not out to power Mangalore United to a mammoth 175/1 in 20 overs.This is the first century of this edition and overall third. Schedule It was a complete domination by Mangalore batsmen, both openers Nair and captain Rohit Sabharwal.
Bulls bowlers toiled hard and remained unsuccessful. Their only wicket in the innings came via a run out of Rohit. Nair and Rohit put on 162 runs in 18.5 overs for the first wicket.
Mangalore's 175/1 is the highest team score so far in the third edition of the KPL. They are the defending champions, having won the tournament in 2010.
It was Nair's outstanding knock that lit up KPL's fifth match of the season at the Gangothri Glades on a Sunday morning. After starting slowly, the right-hander blazed his way to the first hundred of this year's KPL.
Overall, this is the third century in KPL. The first came from Manish Pandey (112*, 2009) and the second was from Mayank Agarwal (100, 2010). Nair's ton is the third fastest hundred.
Pandey had scored 100 off just 57 balls. Agarwal had got to 100 off 61 balls. Nair hit 9 boundaries and 4 sixes in his 100 not out of 62 deliveries. He and Rohit toyed with the bowling.
Nair was on 92 when the 20th over started. He reached to 100 with four doubles. Needing two off the final ball, he made it, guiding the ball towards the on-side.
Mangalore United 175/1 in 20 overs (Karun Nair 100 not out (62 balls, 9x4, 4x6), Rohit Sabharwal 65 (57b, 5x4, 3x6), Abhimanyu Mithun 0/31, MG Naveen 0/31, KP Appanna 0/34)
Bijapur Bulls 171/7 in 20 overs (Suraj Sampath 48 (28b, 4x4, 2x6), Kunal Kapoor 41 (28b, 4x4, 1x6, KC Avinash 28 (20b, 2x6), MG Naveen 22 (14b, 3x4, 1x6), Abhimanyu Mithun 22 (14b, 2x4), Udit Patel 2/27, SL Akshay 1/27, Ronit More 1/36, Mitrakant Yadav 1/38)
Result - Mangalore won by 4 runs
Man-of-the-match - Karun Nair
Best Fielder - Nishant Singh (Bulls)
Centuries in KPL (3)
112* (100 off 57) - Manish Pandey (Belagavi Panthers Vs Mangalore United, 2009)
100 (100 in 61) - Mayank Agarwal (Davangere Diamonds Vs Belagavi Panthers, 2010)
100* (100 off 62) - Karun Nair (Mangalore United Vs Bijapur Bulls, 2014)