Middle-order batsmen Corey Anderson and Anton Devcich staged a spirited fightback after early jitters as New Zealand ‘A’ ended their first day’s play at 300 for eight against India ‘A’ in the second and final four-day ‘Test’ match.
Left proved to be right for the Kiwis as the two left-handers Anderson (100) and Devcich (115) added 165 runs for the fifth wicket after India A bowlers had reduced New Zealand A to 43 for four by the 18th over.
While Anderson smashed 16 fours and two sixes off left-arm spinner Rakesh Dhurv during his 126-ball knock,Devicich was stodgy facing 185 deliveries hitting 15 boundaries in the process.
Mumbai seamer Dhawal Kulkarni (2/26 in 13 overs) and off-spinner Jalaj Saxena (2/69 in 26 overs) were the most successful bowlers while left-arm seamer Shrikant Wagh,UP medium pacer Imtiaz Ahmed and Dhurv also got a wicket apiece.
India A began well as Kulkarni quickly sent back senior team opener Neil Broom (0),who edged an outswinger from the Mumbaikar straight into the gloves of CM Gautham.
Carl Cachopa (3) was Kulkarni’s second victim caught by Imtiaz Ahmed. Last match’s hero Luke Ronchi (0) was snared by Unmukt Chand off Imitiaz’s bowling as New Zealand were reduced to 17 for three.
Tom Latham (21) along with Anderson stuck around for six overs before Wagh coming back for his second spell angled one into the left-handed opener who was struck plumb in-front.
That was the last success that the Indians enjoyed for nearly 40 overs as Anderson and Devcich took the attack back to the opposition camp.
They were not bogged down against the spin duo of Saxena and Dhurv. While they were cautious against the offie,the duo took on the burly Dhurv who was hit to all corners of the ground.
Finally in the 57th over,Anderson was gone trying to play a cut shot off Dhurv having completed his second first-class hundred.
Anderson’s wicket was followed by run-out of Derek de Boorder (1) but Todd Astle (17) added useful 52 runs for the seventh wicket with Devcich before he became Saxena’s first victim.
Devcich’s long vigil finally ended at team’s score of 275 when Saxena got him caught in the close range by Vijay Zol. But Doug Bracewell (12 batting) and Ish Sodhi (14 batting) saw off the remaining 11.4 overs without further damage.
Brief Scores: New Zealand A 1st Innings 300/8 in 89 overs (Anton Devcich 115,Corey Anderson 100,Dhawal Kulkarni 2/26,Jalaj Saxena 2/69) vs India A.