Tamil Nadu will feel the heat

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Andhra skipper Sumanth, despite loss to Kerala, sounds confident

Two teams that have had mixed fortunes — Andhra and Tamil Nadu — will be hoping for a change in luck as they lock horns in the Ranji Trophy Group B match at the CSR Sarma College grounds here on Tuesday.

Tamil Nadu will be under a bit of pressure after having garnered only two points from as many matches in Dindigul and Tirunelveli. The home advantage did not favour the team in both the games for different reasons — weather in the first and surface in the second.

Courageous

The big plus for Tamil Nadu, however, was its courageous performance in the second match against Hyderabad where it did not concede the first innings lead.

Abhinav Mukund and N. Jagadeesan came up with fighting centuries to secure a draw, and the effort should augur well for the team as it plays away from home for the first time this season.

“We are taking forward a lot of positives from the first two games. We are hopeful that the desired results will follow suit eventually,” said Tamil Nadu captain B. Indrajith.

He observed that the wicket will help the pacers a little bit.

“We have not finalised the combination. We might play an extra pacer tomorrow (Tuesday) based on the condition of the wicket in the morning,” he said.

Kanitkar boost

Coach Hrishikesh Kanitkar, who could not travel with the team to Tirunelveli due to personal reasons, has made it here, boosting the morale of the team.

“The start has to be strong for deriving advantage. We need to be very smart and seize the opportunities. If that could be done, it will be a good match for us,” he said.

Andhra opened its campaign in Visakhapatnam in fine fashion by securing three points against Punjab.

But, after suffering a nine-wicket loss against Kerala in Thiruvananthapuram, it will be looking to bounce back at home.

“We have not carried the thought of our loss to Kerala, but I have told my boys that we should not repeat the mistakes,” said Andhra skipper B. Sumanth.

He also sounded confident about his team’s chances against Tamil Nadu.

“Last year we took the first innings lead against them.

“We are going into the game with a positive frame of mind,” he said.

The teams (from):

Andhra: B. Sumanth (Capt.), D.B. Prashanth, Vijay Kumar, Karn Sharma, Ashwin Hebbar, D.B. Ravi Teja, Ricky Bhui, Siva Charan Singh, Karthik Raman, K.V. Sasikanth, Girinath Reddy, B. Ayyappa, Shoaib Khan, Jyothi Krishna, Stephen and G. Manish.

Tamil Nadu: B. Indrajith (Capt.), Abhinav Mukund, N. Jagadeesan, Shahrukh Khan, K. Vignesh, B. Anirudh Sitaram, C.V. Varun, B. Aparajith, M. Kaushik Gandhi, R. Rohith, M. Mohammed, J. Kousik, Rahil Shah, R. Sai Kishore, T. Natarajan and Abhishek Tanwar.

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