Eknath Kerkar, Shreyas Iyer, NaMo Bandra Blasters, SoBo SuperSonics, T20 Mumbai League
Kerkar’s sound knock and twin partnerships of 64 runs with captain Shreyas Iyer for the second wicket and 46 with Prasad Pawar for the fourth, were enough for the Blasters to overhaul the target of 152 runs in the last over despite a late stutter.

Opener Eknath Kerkar (70 off 51) anchored the chase to near-perfection for the NaMo Bandra Blasters, to supersede scintillating SoBo SuperSonics in the second edition of T20 Mumbai League at Wankhede Stadium on Tuesday.

Kerkar’s sound knock and twin partnerships of 64 runs with captain Shreyas Iyer for the second wicket and 46 with Prasad Pawar for the fourth, were enough for the Blasters to overhaul the target of 152 runs in the last over despite a late stutter.

However, had it not been for a superlative performance – both at the start and the death – by right-arm pacer Nikhil Date (3/27) and left-arm spinner Aditya Dhumal (2/28), the Blasters would have found it difficult to restrict SuperSonics to a below-par total of 151 for eight.

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While Date struck the decisive blow, forcing a nick off SuperSonics captain Jay Bista to ’keeper Kerkar in the seventh over, he and Dhumal ended the innings on a decisive note for their team. The duo conceded just 27 runs and scalped four wickets in the last four overs they shared to ensure Yogesh Takawale and Japjeet Randhawa’s rebuilding act fell short of a formidable total.

Kerkar then starred in the chase. With captain Iyer playing the big shots, Kerkar preferred to time the ball through the gaps. While his cover drives drew applause from the crowd, just when he seemed to be taking the team to a comfortable win, he threw his wicket away to seasoned pacer Rohan Raje in the 18th over. However, Pawar’s cameo had virtually sealed the deal by then and despite Pawar and Dhumal falling to leggie Parag Khanapurkar in the next over, Siddharth Chitnis scored the winning runs off Deepak Shetty in the last over.

The victory gave the Blasters their second successive win and also ended up with the SuperSonics on the losing side for the first time in this tournament.

Brief scores: NaMo Bandra Blasters 152/6 in 19.2 overs (Eknath Kerkar 70, Prasad Pawar 31, Shreyas Iyer 31; Parag Khanapurkar 2/9, Khizer Dafedar 2/23) beat SoBo SuperSonics 151/8 in 20 overs (Yogesh Takawale 32, Japjeet Randhawa 27, Jay Bista 27; Nikhil Date 3/29, Aditya Dhumal 2/28, Sujit Nayak 2/30) by four wickets

Man of the Match: Eknath Kerkar