HUBBALLI: Skipper Priyank Panchal’s dogged 87 (148 balls, 12 fours, 2 sixes) and an unbeaten 74 (104 balls, 10 fours) from KS Bharat took India ‘A’ to 229 for six on the rain-hit second day of the second unofficial Test against New Zealand ‘A’.
After the first day’s play was called off due to wet outfield, the truncated second day saw 66 overs being bowled on Friday. And, most of the top and middle-order India ‘A’ batters failed to make an impression. But, the Panchal-Bharat duo rescued the home team with a 117-run fifth-wicket stand after they were left in a tangle at 68 for four.
The three centurions from the previous ‘Test’ – Abhimanyu Easwaran (22), Rajat Patidar (4) and Tilak Varma (0) – were dismissed cheaply while Ruturaj Gaikwad (5) endured his second failure of the series. Shardul Thakur (26), a late addition to the squad, was involved in a 38-run alliance with Bharat to take India ‘A’ past the 200-run mark.
For the visitor, pacers Logan van Beek (2/39) and Jacob Duffy (2/55) took two wickets apiece while spinners Rachin Ravindra (1/20) and Sean Solia (1/58) bagged a scalp each. At the beginning of the day, Panchal and Easwaran had started off on a positive note, having put on 37 runs at the stroke of the first hour.
BRIEF SCORES: India ‘A’ 229/6 in 66 overs (P Panchal 87, KS Bharat 74*, L Van Beek 2/39, J Duffy 2/55) vs New Zealand ‘A’