Kochi: Kerala scored a thrilling two-run victory over Andhra Pradesh in their Plate group A league match on the fourth and final day on Friday.
The match was interestingly poised with Andhra, chasing a target of 188, requiring just three runs for win with the last pair at the crease.
In-form Kerala all-rounder Sony Cheruvathur, adjudged man-of-the-match, dismissed overnight unbeaten G V S Prasad (21) to give his side a memorable win.
Resuming at overnight 185 for 9, Andhra batsmen Prasad and P D Vijayakumar (9) batted very cautiously.
But Cheruvathur, who has been in fine form from the start of the season, dismissed Prasad who edged the ball to wicketkeeper Akshay Kodoth without any addition to his overnight score.
Kerala got five points from this win taking their tally to 13. They have one more match against Himachal Pradesh to be played from December 7. If Kerala takes first innings lead against Himachal, they will qualify for the semis.
This is the fourth time in the history of Ranji Trophy that a team has won by two runs. The previous lowest margin results are:
Andhra won by one run against Tamil Nadu in Salem in 1974-75;
Haryana won by two runs against Mumbai in Mumbai 1990-91;
Mumbai won by two runs against Rajasthan in Jhalwar in 2007-08 and Services won by two runs against Vidarbha at Nagpur in 2010-11.
Brief scores: Kerala: 130 and 131 defeat Andhra 74 and 185 all out by two runs.