Karnataka team celebrates after the win over Railways © IANS
Kolkata: Mar 16, 2014
It is due to Karnataka’s “bigger goal” of having as many representatives as possible in the Indian that the southern side is presently reaping the benefits at the domestic level. They completed a historic treble on Sunday by winning the Vijay Hazare Trophy at the Eden Gardens. They had earlier won the Ranji and Irani trophies.
Describing this as a great milestone, Karnataka skipper R Vinay Kumar said: “The mantra is nothing different. In our side everyone wants to play for India. Once they have a bigger goal, small things fall in place.”
Karnataka skittled out Railways for a paltry 157 in 47.4 overs and chased down the target with four wickets and seven overs to spare. Karnataka were in a spot of bother having lost five quick wickets to be 47 for five, but youngster Karun Nair‘s sparkling 53 not out sealed the chase.
He rated this Karnataka side as the best ever. ”If you see, every day different players are performing for us. We are not banking on any particular individual, we have been combining well as a side. I think this is the best ever side.”
The out-of-favour India medium pacer said they would now look to achieve a qudraple of titles by winning the Syed Mushtaq Ali Twenty20 beginning next month.
“Yes, that will be in our mind. But we want to go step by step. We take one match at a time and give our best. The rest falls in place.”
The biggest gain for Karnataka has been out-of-favour India batsman Robin Uthappa’s coming to form as the opener has smashed three centuries and one fifty to top the run charts with 536 runs at an average of 76.57.
Among youngsters, Nair, who made his Ranji debut this season, has impressed with his maiden List A century as he totaled 309 from eight innings, while wicketkeeper Lokesh Rahul, too, impressed with his glovework and batting.
Vinay Kumar spearheaded the bowling well, topping the list with 28 scalps, while the final’s Man of the Match Abhimanyu Mithun excelled with 13 wickets from six matches.