Bengaluru, Aug 24: On Thursday (Aug 25) evening, in the Garden City of India, Karun Nair-led Mysuru Warriors will take on the Gulbarga Mystics who are captained by Manish Pandey, and at stake is a place in the summit clash of the Maharaja Trophy.
The winner of Qualifier 2 will face the Mayank Agarwal-led Bengaluru Blasters.
The Gulbarga Mystics finished second in the league stage of the tournament, winning 6 games out of the 10 played. Meanwhile their opponents, Mysuru Warriors, finished fourth out of six teams, having registered five wins and as many defeats.
Coming into the knockout phase of the tournament, the Warriors and Karun Nair had their task cut out, as their form ebbed and flowed through the course of the first phase. Nonetheless, once the clock struck Eliminator time, some of the more experienced players such as Nihal Ullal and Shreyas Gopal took charge. And even though Pavan Deshpande did not have the best game, he has been among the best batters through August, staying on the heels of Mayank Agarwal in the race for the Orange Cap.
Among the bowlers, Shreyas has been in sublime form, spinning quite the web around opposition batters with Vidyadhar Patil and Shubhang Hegde providing solid support. While Shreyas and Patil have picked 16 wickets so far, the most in the tournament, Hegde has 14 to his name, helping form a troika that's tough to breakdown.
Speaking about the tournament so far, Shreyas Gopal said, "The tournament has been great, the quality of matches is pretty high. If you see, some of the IPL bowlers going for 40s, IPL batsmen haven't got too many runs but some of the younger boys who haven't event played the Ranji Trophy or T20 Syed Mushtaq Ali are actually doing well. Youngsters are giving the seniors a run for their money and there is healthy competition in the state now."
Talking about the Qualifier against Gulbarga Mystics on Thursday, Shreyas said, "I am looking forward to play against Gulbarga because we have lost to them twice earlier and would like to avenge those losses and qualify for the final."
In the blue corner, the Gulbarga Mystics ended the league stage strongly, winning 3 out of the last 4 they played, before being edged out in Qualifier 1 by the high-flying Bengaluru Blasters in a high-scoring game. For the Mystics, who have the experience of Manish Pandey in the middle-order, there is also a certain Rohan Patil at the top of the order.
Rohan has been in outrageous form for the Mystics, scoring two centuries, including one against the Warriors when he hammered an unbeaten 112 from 47 deliveries. With no Devdutt Padikkal in the last few games, the Mystics have depended heavily on Rohan, Manish and Jeswath Acharya to do the heavy lifting with the bat.
The Mystics, who will be hoping to be razor sharp in the field on Thursday, it has been Vidhwath Kaverappa's 15 wickets and Codanda Ajit Karthik's 13 scalps that has helped them out with the ball.
Scorer of two centuries so far, Rohan Patil expressed confidence ahead of the game against Warriors said, "We can really close to beating the Bengaluru Blasters but we didn't have enough wickets at hand. Our run rate was good, and we could hold on to the wickets, we could have reached 228 well within 20 overs. Nevertheless, now our focus is on the match against Mysuru and we are confident of a good show."
Neither team has had the strongest runs of form in the tournament, but both sides have displayed the ability to be an unbeatable unit on their day. Come Qualifier 2, expect Karun and Manish to find the perfect pep talks to motivate their sides. The fans await a show, and the cast is going through their final preps before taking the stage by storm.
The winner of Qualifier 2 will play Bengaluru Blasters in the final on Friday.
Gulbarga Mystics: Manish Pandey (captain), Devdutt Padikkal, Karthik CA, Manoj Bhandage, Vidwath Kaverappa, Kruthik Krishna, Abhilash Shetty, Kushaal M Wadhwani, Pranav Bhatia, Shrijith KL (WK), Ritesh Bhatkal, Mohit BA, Rohan Patil, Dhanush Gowda, Mohammed Aqib Jawad, Shreesha Achar, Jeshwanth Acharya, Aaron Christie.
Mysore Warriors: Karun Nair (captain), Shreyas Gopal, Shubhang Hegde, Pavan Deshpande, Vidyadhar Patil, Nihal Ullal, Prateek Jain, Lochan Appanna, Chiranjeevi GS, Naga Bharath, Bharath Duri, Shivraj S, Monish Reddy, Varun Rao TN, Rahul Prasanna, Nitin Bhille, Aditya Goyal, Abhishek Ahlawat.
Qualifier 2: Mysuru Warriors vs Gulbarga Mystics
Date: Aug 25th (Thursday)
Time: 7:00pm IST
Source: Media Release