Australia A bowl out India A for 135

Chennai, July 29 (IANS) The first day of the second and final four-day first class cricket match against Australia A turned out to be quite dismal for India A, who were bowled out for a meagre 135 at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium here on Wednesday.

At stumps, Australia A were batting at 43 for no loss with openers Cameron Bancroft and Usman Khawaja unbeaten on 24 and 13, trailing India A by 92 runs.

It was a poor first innings outing for the hosts, who despite winning the toss and having India Test skipper Virat Kohli (16) in their ranks, collapsed for the measly total.

The fall started when captain Cheteshwar Pujara (11) was bowled by medio Marcus Stoinis (1/21). India A were soon tottering at 53/4 with the losses of opener Abhinav Mukund (15), Kohli and Shreyas Iyer (1).

Kohli hit a six and a boundary and looked like getting a big one but left-arm tweaker Ashton Agar (2/23) had other plans and put an end to the Indian’s innings, getting him trapped in front of the wickets.

Karun Nair (50) and wicketkeeper batsman Naman Ojha then offered the only resistance to Australia A bowlers by striking an important 56-run fifth wicket partnership. Though Ojha contributed only 10 runs in the stand, his 84-ball stay helped Nair reach his half-century in 153 deliveries.

But once Ojha was stumped of Agar (2/23), the final fall happened again with India A losing their last six wickets for only 24 runs, totally giving the advantage to the visitors.

Indian origin Australian pacer Gurinder Sandhu picked the most number of wickets. The right-armer cleaned up the India A tail to end with 3/25. Agar, spinner Steve O’Keefe (2/30) and pacer Andrew Fekete (2/33) also clinched two wickets each.

In reply, the visitors started well as Bancroft and Khawaja did not play loose shots and stuck it out in the middle for 13 overs before the close of play.

Brief scores: India A 135 all out (Karun Nair 50; Gurinder Sandhu 3/25, Ashton Agar 2/23, Steve O’Keefe 2/30) vs Australia A 43 for no loss (Cameron Bancroft 24 not out).

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