Thiruvananthapuram: Sachin Baby thwarted Karnataka and helped Kerala earn a draw in their Rani Trophy Elite Group C match at the St Xavier's College Ground, Thumba, on Friday.
However, the draw was enough for Karnataka to seal their place in the quarterfinals.
Just as in the first innings, Sachin rescued Kerala after the visitors reduced them to 31/3 after gaining a first innings lead of 143 runs on the fourth and final day.
The left-handed Sachin and Vathsal Govind added 55 for the fourth wicket. More importantly, the pair lasted 25 overs.
Vathsal made 26 off 76 balls, with the help of four fours.
Sachin and Salman Nizar (four not out) had taken the score to 96 when Karnataka captain Mayank Agrawal agreed for a draw. The two added 10 off 55 balls.
Sachin remained unbeaten on 37 off 109 balls. His patient knock contained four hits to the fence.
Off-spinner K Gowtham (3/35) was the pick of the Karnataka bowlers.
Earlier, Karnataka declared their first innings on 485/9 after resuming on 410/6. The overnight batters B R Sharath and Shubhang Hegde hit fifties to stretch their lead.
Wicketkeeper Sharath scored 53, while Hegde notched up an unbeaten 50.
Karnataka bagged three points, while Kerala had to settle for one. Karnataka continue to top the group with 29 points from six matches.
Jharkhand are in second place with 23 points, while Kerala are in fourth spot behind Rajasthan on run quotient with 20 points from six games.
Kerala meet Puducherry in an away tie from Tuesday in their final group match.
The second-placed team will also advance to the quarterfinals.
Brief scores: Kerala 342 and 96/4 in 51 overs (Sachin Baby 37 not out; K Gowtham 3/35) drew with Karnataka 485/9 declared in 163.1 overs (Mayank Agarwal 208, Nikin Jose 54, B R Sharth 53, Shubhang Hegde 50 not out; Vaisakh Chandran 3/117, M D Nidheesh 2/102, Jalaj Saxena 2/124).
Points: Karnataka 3; Kerala 1.