||Samples of infected plants showing symptoms of leaf / folair / sheath blight were collected from six to eight disease foci per row (~10 m between each focus) in a total of five rows per field with the goal of obtaining approximately 30 - 40 isolates per field population, keeping a single isolate per focus. Isolation and preservation of the fungal isolates were performed as previously described. Briefly, isolations were made by placing fragments of infected leaves into Petri dishes containing modified Ko & Hora selective medium and incubating at 25°C in the dark. Pure cultures were established by transferring hyphal fragments to potato dextrose agar medium containing 50 μg/mL chloramphenicol and streptomycin. Sclerotia from five-day-old cultures were transferred to 1.8-mL cryotubes containing anhydrous silica gel for long-term storage at -20°C.