New Delhi: Mayank Agarwal’s dream run in domestic cricket continued as his power-packed 140 off only 111 balls was the cornerstone in Karnataka’s crushing 103-run victory over Hyderabad in the quarter-final match of Vijay Hazare Trophy here on Wednesday. Along with Ravikumar Samarth (125 off 124 balls), Mayank added 242 runs for the second wicket as Karnataka piled up a huge 347 for 8 in 50 overs and then bowled out Hyderabad for 244 in 42.5 overs with Shreyas Gopal picking up 5 for 31.
The day certainly belonged to Agarwal, who had scored more than 1000 runs in Ranji Trophy this season. Post match, he was asked if he had a point to prove to Rahul Dravid, who in 2015-16 had said that Agarwal needed to be more consistent. “I am not out here to prove any point to anyone. In the past one and half years, my consistency has improved and I am more aware about my strengths and weaknesses. I am grateful to my coach Mr RX Murali, who has worked with me extensively on my game. He helped me evolve as a player,” Agarwal told reporters after the game.
With chairman of selectors MSK Prasad and his colleague Sarandeep Singh in attendance at the Kotla, the right-handed opener cashed in on a placid Kotla track in company of another India A player Samarth, with both making merry of the Hyderabad attack. Although Mohammed Siraj (5/59 in 10 overs) was the most successful bowler for Hyderabad, most of his wickets came during the death overs when Karnataka batsmen were going for their shots.
The day certainly belonged to Agarwal as he punished each and every Hyderabad bowler with equal disdain. There were a couple of front-foot and a back foot cover drive off Siraj, an on-drive off Ravi Kiran which signalled his intent. When left-arm spinner Mehdi Hassan was introduced into the attack, Agarwal lofted him for a straight six. A back cut off Hassan got him to his 50.