Dindigul: Siechem Madurai Panthers took a huge step towards qualifying for the Playoffs with a 33-run victory against Chepauk Super Gillies at the NPR College Ground here on Saturday.
Madurai did well to post 172-7 after winning the toss and their bowlers defended it with gusto by restricting Chepauk Super Gillies to 139-8 in 20 overs.
In a remarkable display of death-over bowling, fast bowler Kiran Akash (4-1-23-3) bowled a maiden in the 19th over and claimed two wickets to end CSG\92s hopes. It was SMP\92s third victory on the trot in four days, earning them third spot in the eight-team standings. They have eight points from six matches, same as CSG, who are on the second spot.
After 18 overs, CSG were within striking distance of the target as they needed 35 runs from 12 balls with their best batsmen U Sasidev (51 off 42 balls, 4 fours, 2 sixes) and hard-hitting all-rounder S Harish Kumar (23 off 14 balls, 2 fours, 2 sixes) at the crease.
Kiran Akash\92s first ball, a short delivery was hit by Sasidev straight into the hands of deep backward point fielder\92s hands. Off the next ball, M Siddarth walked across and tried to flick the ball but ended up edging it to the wicketkeeper Nilesh Subramaniam, who showed superb reflexes to pouch it. The 23-year-old did not allow Rahul Dev any run off the next three balls, to seal the contest decisively in SMP\92s favour.
With 35 needed from the last over, pacer Abhishek Tanwar conceded just two runs in the over to seal the victory for Madurai Panthers.
Earlier, KH Gopinath (45 off 32 balls, 5 sixes) and Sasidev had pulled CSG out from a difficult situation — 14-3 in the third over — by stringing a 63-run stand off 51 balls for the fourth wicket. But once Gopinath was caught by a diving KB Arun Karthick off the miserly left-arm spinner Rahil Shah (1-15), the task became tougher for CSG.
Jagadeesan hits century
Narayan Jagadeesan did what Murali Vijay couldn\92t, to help Dindigul Dragons get past Ruby Trichy Warriors by five wickets in the TNPL at the NPR College Ground, here on Saturday evening.
Jagadeesan scored a superb century while Vijay missed it narrowly by one run as both batsmen unleashed a brilliant exhibition of batting display to the delight of the thousands, who had turned up for the match.
Vijay\92s 99 off 62 balls that contained 7 fours and 7 sixes was the high point in Ruby Trichy Warriors\92 178-3 in 20 overs. The 24-year-old Jagadeesan put that innings to shade with an unbeaten 105 off 60 balls, laden with 12 fours and 4 sixes. DD became the first team to qualify for the Playoffs with an all-win record from five matches.
Ruby Trichy Warriors 178-3 in 20 overs (Karunakaran Mukunth 43, Murali Vijay 99; Jagannathan Koushik 2-45) lost to Dindigul Dragons 182-5 in 20 overs(Narayan Jagadeesan 105 not out, Rajendran Vivek 29; Sai Kishore 2-16) by five wickets.
Siechem Madurai Panthers 172-7 in 20 overs (KB Arun Karthick 39, Shijit Chandran 39, R Nilesh Subramanian 31; Ganeshan Periyasamy 2-37, Senathipathy Harish Kumar 2-30) beat Chepauk Super Gillies 139-8 in 20 overs (KH Gopinath 45, Uthiraswamy Sasidev 51, Harish Kumar 23; Abhishek Tanwar 3-18, Kiran Akash 3-23, Rahil Shah 1-15) by 33 runs.