Karnataka face tough task
By S S Shreekumar | ENS - BANGALORE
08th December 2012 11:44 AM
Karnataka has a lot of catching up to do in their group B Ranji Trophy campaign this season. Languishing at the bottom of the table, if they hope to rise a couple of notches higher, they must produce far better performances in the remaining matches beginning with the one against Delhi from the morrow at the Chinnaswamy Stadium.
On paper at least, Karnataka appear to be far more formidable than Delhi. But then as it happened in the last outing against Odisha, they could dig and hole and bury themselves in it. Names do not matter, performances do. That’s what Odisha showed as their lesser lights hogged the limelight with effective showings.
Delhi too come off a shock defeat against Haryana. Led by Shikhar Dhawan, they too are making concerted efforts to better their far more impressive record so far compared to Karnataka. In a way, both teams are on the same plank vis-a-vis their last games at least. Delhi have 11 points from five matches while Karnataka have managed just five so far from four matches.
“It is difficult when you lose a match like the last one in Lahli. But we have had a couple of good sessions since we arrived in Bangalore. The boys have looked sharp in the training session and will not like to repeat the mistakes made against Haryana,” Delhi’s chief coach Vijay Dahiya said. “As far as the team combination is concerned, off-spinner Manoj Chauhan is likely to sit out as the two strips that have been kept ready for the match have a greenish look to it. They have left a fair bit of grass which means they would also go all-out for a win. Manoj will be sitting out but we haven’t decided on the replacement. It can be either Ashish Nehra who was already fit during the last match or Pawan Suyal who was rested during last match,” he said. Nehra broke down after bowling only six overs against Baroda and it remains to be seen how he holds out here, should he play. Suyal, coming off an injury, however, has done comparatively well.
Karnataka’s batting has a lot of depth and bowling enough variety but then they have not been able to deliver even in familiar home conditions. Fortunately, new ball bowler and skipper Vinay Kumar is fit and can lead by example on this strip. It is runs that matter and the batting has the responsibility to post enough for the bowlers to skittle out the opponents. In any case, they have an arduous task at hand.
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