Pujara stands tall as Indians collapse again

India ‘A’ skipper Cheteshwar Pujara (67) stood tall amid ruins after his West Indies ‘A’ counterpart Veersammy Permaul wrecked the visiting line-up with a five-wicket haul on the second day of their second ‘Test’ on Sunday.

India ‘A’ top-order once again flopped as the side folded up for 202, giving the hosts a vital 15-run first innings lead.

In reply, the West Indies ‘A’ were six for no loss in their second innings with openers Kraigg Brathwaite (4) and Justin Guillen (1) at the crease before draw of stumps. It was yet another shambolic batting performance by the Indians as Permaul ripped through the middle order for figures of five for 58.

Earlier, India ‘A’ wasted little time at the start of the day, wrapping up the Windies innings with the hosts adding just five to their overnight 212 for eight before being dismissed.

Brathwaite, unbeaten on 66, was bowled by seamer Shami Ahmed (4/48) without adding to his score and Devendra Bishoo followed soon afterward, trapped LBW by the same bowler for two. But the visiting side’s response was hardly any better as they plunged to 12 for two before Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane stitched up the innings with a 74-run, third wicket stand. Pujara faced 156 balls in 170 minutes, hitting six fours and a six.

Brief scores: West Indies ‘A’ (O/n: 212/8): 217 all out in 90 overs (Kraigg Brathwaite 66, Nkrumah Bonner 25, Veerasammy Permaul 36; Ashok Dinda 2-22, Shami Ahmed 4-43, Rohit Sharma 2-31) and 6/0 in 4 overs vs India ‘A’: 202 all out in 79.2 overs (Cheteshwar Pujara 67, Rahul Sharma 30; Delorn Johnson 2-28, Veerasammy Parmaul 5-58).

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