Visakhapatnam, March 29 (IANS) Seasoned Dinesh Karthik cracked 126 as Tamil Nadu defeated India 'Red' by 42 runs in the final to clinch the Deodhar Trophy 50-overs cricket tournament at the ACA-VDCA stadium here on Wednesday.
The wicketkeeper-batsman shared a 136-run stand with Narayan Jagadeesan (55) for the fourth wicket which drove Tamil Nadu to 303/9 in 50 overs.
India 'Red' were bowled out for 261 in 46.1 overs as Tamil Nadu completed a domestic double of winning the Deodhar Trophy as well as the Vijay Hazare Trophy.
Karthik's 125-ball 126 proved to be the difference between the two sides as India 'Red' batsmen Shikhar Dhawan (45), Manish Pandey (32), Harpreet Singh (36) got starts but couldn't convert them into big ones. Gurkeerat Singh top-scored with a 64 for them.
Karthik walked into bat with Tamil Nadu tottering at 39/3 in the 11th over, thanks to a rampaging spell of seam bowling from Dhawal Kulkarni, who removed Kaushik Gandhi (16), V. Ganga Sridhar Raju (13) and M. Ashwin (0).
Both Karthik and Jagadeesan started slowly but scored at a decent pace which helped them put up a strong partnership until Chama Milind dismissed the latter, with Tamil Nadu at 175/4 in 30.3 overs.
But Karthik continued to build his innings and forged a 66-run partnership with Vijay Shankar (21) which put Tamil Nadu on the way to a big total.
Karthik was dismissed by left-arm spinner Axar Patel in 38.6 overs. He hit 14 fours and three sixes.
Afterwards, even though Tamil Nadu kept losing wickets, Baba Indrajith's 31 not out drove them past 300.
For India 'Red', Kulkarni was the pick of the bowlers, bagging five wickets for 39 runs in 10 overs.
India 'Red', chasing the big total, needed a good opening partnership and that didn't happen when Parthiv Patel (15) was dismissed by M. Mohammed.
The side depended on the next partnership, Dhawan-Pandey but it could last for only 64 runs. Dhawan was caught by Washington Sundar off a Rahil Shah delivery to leave India 'Red' at 83/2 in 10.4 overs.
Next man in, Ishank Jaggi (1) fell early to R Sai Kishore. If these two quick wickets were not enough, Pandey was retired hurt with them at a difficult situation at 93/3. Afterwards, Gurkeerat and Harpreet put up 72 runs for the fourth wicket to give a glimmer of hope to India 'Red'.
When Harpreet was dismissed, with India 'Red' at 165/4 in 28.5 overs, they were still very much in contention as per the required run rate. But losing so many wickets didn't help them.
Tamil Nadu kept taking wickets. Axar Patel got a duck to make it more difficult for India 'Red'. However, Gurkeerat got good support from Akshay Karnewar (29) and the duo forged a 56-run stand for the sixth wicket.
Gurkeerat, too fell soon, leaving India 'Red' with a daunting 76 required from 7.5 overs.
Pandey returned to bat but couldn't stay long as he was dismissed by Rahil, with India 'Red' at 233/8 in 42.4 overs. Afterwards it was a formality for Tamil Nadu, who bowled out India 'Red' for 261.
Brief scores: Tamil Nadu: 303/9 (Dinesh Karthik 126, Narayan Jagadeesan 55; Dhawal Kulkarni 5/39). India 'Red': 261 all out in 46.1 overs (Gurkeerat Singh 64, Shikhar Dhawan 45; Rahil Shah 3/40, R. Sai Kishore 2/41, M. Mohammed 2/53).