Indians beat Western Australia in 2nd warm-up game

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Perth, Jan 9 (IANS) Half-centuries by Rohit Sharma and Manish Pandey backed up by a disciplined bowling performance helped the Indians to a 64-run victory over Western Australia XI in a 50-over match here on Saturday.

Rohit was the top scorer for the tourists, scoring 67 runs off 82 balls. The Mumbai lad smashed six boundaries and three sixes during his innings.

Pandey, on the other hand, consumed 59 deliveries for his 58, studding his stay in the middle with three hits to the fence.

Ajinkya Rahane also continued his good form with a 53-ball 41 as the Indians were all out for 249 runs in 49.1 overs.

For the hosts, medium-pacer Drew Porter made full use of the pace and bounce on offer at the Western Australia Cricket Association (WACA) pitch, claiming a five-wicket haul.

Rookie pacer Rishi Dhawan (2/28), Axar Patel (2/29), Ravichandran Ashwin (2/32) and Ravindra Jadeja (2/38) picked up a couple of wickets each as Western Australia were all out for 185 runs in 49.2 overs.

Uncapped off-spinner Gurkeerat Singh Mann (1/1) and fast bowler Umesh Yadav (1/29) also picked up a wicket each.

This was the second win for the Indians during the ongoing tour. They had defeated Western Australia XI by 74 runs in a Twenty20 match here on Friday.

Jaron Morgan (50) was the top scorer for the hosts, notching up a half-century before being sent back to the pavilion by Dhawan. The left-hander hit four boundaries and a six during his 66-ball knock. Opener Jake Carder also batted well for the hosts, scoring a patient 45 runs off 73 deliveries.

Electing to bat, the Indians suffered an early jolt when opener Shikhar Dhawan departed in the second over. Virat Kohli did not seem convincing during his short stint at the crease and was soon trapped leg before by a full length delivery from Porter.

Rahane joined Rohit in the middle and the duo brought the visitors’ innings back on track with an 88-run stand. Leg-spinner James Muirhead finally ended the partnership when Rahane misread the bounce of a delivery which skidded on after pitching.

The Indian innings lost a bit of momentum when Gurkeerat Singh (6) and Rohit were dismissed in quick succession. But Panday and Jadeja (26) ensured a strong finish.

In reply, Western Australia XI lost wickets at regular intervals. Except for Morgan and Carder, none of the Australian batsmen seemed too comfortable against the Indian attack.

The hosts were off to a steady start before skipper William Bosisto (13) was caught behind off an outgoing delivery from Yadav. They lost their second wicket a short while later when D’Arcy Short (10) was bowled by Ashwin with one that turned sharply.

Nick Hobson (4) was sent back by Dhawan in the very next over as the Indians tightened their grip on the match. By the time Carder was trapped leg-before by Jadeja, the tourist were well on their way to a convincing victory.

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