India A impose innings defeat on South Africa A
A stupendous batting effort from the top order coupled with a commendable bowling display by the pacers helped India A crush South Africa A by an innings and 13 runs in the 1st unofficial Test at Olympia Park on Tuesday.
India A dominated proceedings on the first two days of the 4-day Test, declaring after putting up a massive total of 582 at the loss of 9 wickets. Cheteshwar Pujara (137), Rohit Sharma (119) and Suresh Raina (135) got to their respective centuries, while Murali Vijay (44), Ishwar Pandey (35), Jaydev Unadkat (31) and Shahbaz Nadeem (46) chipped in with useful runs as the bowlers looked on helplessly.
In response, South Africa fought back with JP Duminy (84), Rilee Rossouw (57), Justin Ontong (47) and Thami Tsolekile (47) scoring much-needed runs. However, impressive spells from Ishwar Pandey (4/46) and Suresh Raina (3/40) with able support from other bowlers ensured the hosts fell well-short of the Indian total, folding up for 357 in their first innings.
Asked to follow on, South Africa A were once again in trouble as the Indian bowlers showed no signs of letting up on the intensity. Pandey (3/25) continued the momentum, while Mohammad Shami (3/33) rose to the occasion, picking timely wickets and unsettling the batsmen. Rohit Sharma's (2/19) part-time off spin got rid of the top-scorer Temba Bavuma (65) and that paved the way for another batting collapse as the batsmen fell like ninepins. South Africa A were bowled out for 212 in just 66.5 overs, giving India A a morale-boosting victory.
The 2nd unofficial Test between India A and South Africa A begins on August 24 at Pretoria.