After two thrilling games and a sizzling opening ceremony in the Bengaluru leg, the tournament now shifts to Mysuru
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Mysuru, 3 September 2017: After two matches, a hit of an opening ceremony, and plenty of excitement in Bengaluru, the Karbonn Smartphones Karnataka Premier League 2017, powered by Cycle Pure Agarbathies, shifts to Mysuru. And if the Bengaluru leg is anything to go by, Mysuru is in for a treat.
For starters, the legendary Karnataka and India batsman GR Viswanath addressed the Mysuru media during the press conference at the Southern Star Hotel here on Sunday (3 September). That was preceded by a glamorous fashion show with the captains of the seven franchises walking the ramp with models who will also be seen at the Mysore Fashion Week, thereby bringing the tournament into town with a bang. Also at the launch, the legendary Viswanath unveiled the orange cap for the top run-getter, purple cap for the top wicket-taker and the trophy for the Man of the Series.
It was also confirmed that Her Majesty of Mysuru Maharani Pramoda Devi would inaugurate the opening match at the S.D.N.R Wadiyar ground between Mysuru Warriors and Bijapur Bulls on Monday (4 September).
Vinay Mruthyanjaya, KPL Governing Council Member & Official Spokesperson, KSCA, said: “Mysuru has always had a loyal and passionate fan base for the Karnataka Premier League, the people here love their cricket. It makes it a joy for us to host the tournament in this city, and we’re sure this leg of the sixth edition of the tournament will be a resounding success.”
The tournament couldn’t have gotten off to a better start. Bengaluru had been ravaged by rain in the lead-up to the event, but even the clouds relented at the sight of the M Chinnaswamy Stadium, decked up in KPL colours, all prepared for the opening ceremony.
The stage was propped up adjacent to the mid-off region, straight down the pitch, with excellent works of light and colour on either side. The popular singer, Sangeetha Raju, was the first on stage, the sizeable crowd rising in unison at the sight of her. Then came movie star Sharmiela Mandre, her folk dance routine with a troupe taking the frenzy up a notch. The folk drummers brought their own flavour to the ensemble, and the frequent pops of colour and sound added to the celebratory occasion.
Charu Sharma, the reputed sports presenter, then took the stage and called on the governing council members of the KPL to join him, along with Amitabh Choudhary, the acting secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), and Sudhir Hasija, the owner of Karbonn Smartphones. He then called on the team captains to join him on stage, the noise levels of the crowd rising as each player walked on. But the biggest cheers were saved for the next entrant – Superstar Puneet Rajkumar fashionably entered the arena in a buggy and walked the red carpet with the trophy.
After all assembled posed with the trophy, Charu Sharma announced the KPL’s support for the Rally for Rivers campaign, an initiative of Isha Foundation. The force behind Isha Foundation, Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev relayed a message via video on the big screen. The ceremony then ended with the national anthem, ensuring the match would soon be underway.
And what a match it was. A thrilling encounter ended with Hubli Tigers taking home all the points, thanks to KV Siddharth’s fine unbeaten half-century. Hubli made early inroads after opting to bowl, captain R Vinay Kumar leading from the front with incisive bowling that yielded a breakthrough in the very first over. Hubli remained on top till Sunil Kumar Jain walked in and blasted a 34-ball 39 to help set Belagavi Panthers a tricky target of 128.
And tricky it proved after Stuart Binny and S Arvind claimed two early Hubli wickets, but Siddharth’s brilliant 51-ball 61 – a performance which earned him the Man of the Match award – eventually swung it Hubli’s way.
The next day, the clash between Bengaluru Blasters and Mysuru Warriors was truncated to an eight-overs-a-side match, but even in that short span, the match proved a thriller, with Mysuru Warriors putting in an all-round performance to see off Bengaluru by 38 runs with Arjun Hoysala scoring an 18-ball 31 – a performance which earned him the Man of the Match award.
All of which means the Mysuru leg of the tournament is bound to be a hit. There’s a lot the locals can look forward to.