Andhra Pradesh dished out an all-round show to beat an in-form Kerala by six wickets in an Elite Group E match of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy T20 tournament here on Sunday.
Kerala, who had won their first three matches in the Elite E group, managed to score 112/4 after being asked to bat first at the BKC ground as the Andhra bowlers bowled in the right areas.
Andhra then overhauled the target in 17.1 overs, with opener Ashwin Hebbar top-scoring with a 46-ball 48.
Kerala lost both openers, Robin Uthhapa (8) and Mohammed Azharuddeen (12) cheaply and were in a spot of bother at 28/2. It soon became 30/3 after skipper Sanju Samson (7) also perished early.
Vishnu Vinod (4), who walked in at number five, gave little support to Sachin Baby (51 not out off 34 balls, 1x4; 4x6) as Kerala reeled at 38 for 4.
But then, Baby found an able partner in Jalaj Saxena (27 not out off 34 balls; 1x4) as the two forged an unbeaten 74-run stand for the fifth wicket to take their side to 112/4, which was eventually not enough.
For Andhra, Manish Golamaru (2/19) was the pick of the bowlers.
Andhra's chase was anchored by right-handed opener Hebbar, who hammered six boundaries and a six, despite losing partners at the other end.
After Hebbar departed, skipper Ambati Rayudu (38 not out off 27 balls; 4x4 and 1x6) ensured that there were no further hiccups and took his side home in company of D B Prashanth Kumar (9 not out).
Andhra fetched four points for the win.
Brief Scores: At BKC: Kerala 112/4 (Sachin Baby 51 not out; Jalaj Saxena 27 not out; Manish Golamaru 2/19, Shoiab Mohammed Khan 1/12) lost to Andhra Pradesh 113/4 (Ashwin Hebbar 48, Ambati Rayudu 38 not out; Jalaj Saxena 2/9) by six wickets.
At Wankhede Stadium: Mumbai 94 all out (Shivam Dube 28, Akash Parkar 20 not out; Santha Moorthy 5/20, A Aravinddaraj 2/20) lost to Puducherry 95/4 (S Karthik 26, Sheldon Jackson 24 not out; Shivam Dube 2/8) by six wickets.
For in-depth, objective and more importantly balanced journalism, Click here to subscribe to Outlook Magazine