Siraj eight-for rattles Australia 'A'

Siraj eight-for rattles Australia 'A'

RED-HOT Mohammed Siraj of India ‘A’ successfully appeals for a leg before wicket during the opening day of the four-day game against Australia ‘A’ in Bengaluru. DH PHOTO/RANJU P

Mohammed Siraj, who impressed in the two four-day games against South Africa ‘A’ here, once again produced a stellar performance to put India ‘A’ on top against Australia ‘A’ on the opening day of the first four-day game on Sunday. 

The right-arm medium pacer produced career-best figures of eight for 59 to help the hosts dismiss Australia ‘A’ for 243 here at the m Chinnaswamy stadium. 

If not for a fine hundred from Usman Khawaja (127, 228b, 20x4), the visitors would have found themselves in deep trouble.

Australia ‘A’ lost their first wicket on 78 and it was a decent start from Mitchell Marsh’s men but Siraj triggered a dramatic collapse. The Hyderabad pacer bagged four wickets in a spell to push the visitors to the wall.  

Among his prized wickets were Test players Marsh (0) and Khawaja even as four Australia ‘A’ batsmen were out for single digits.

Apart from Marsh, Chris Tremain, Brendan Doggett, Peter Handscomb and Michael Neser lso failed to open their accounts.

Kuldeep Yadav, axed from the Indian squad for the England Tests,  was the other wicket-taker for the Shreyas Iyer-led side. The chinaman bowler picked up two wickets for 63 runs.

Khawaja, who hung on at one end, was the last batsman to depart after giving a catch to wicketkeeper K Bharat off Siraj. The visitors’ best period was when Khawaja forged a 114-run fifth-wicket partnership with Marnus Labuschagne, who scored 60 in 105 balls with 11 boundaries.  Kurtis Patterson was the only other batsman to make more than 15 runs.

India ‘A’, in reply were 41 for no loss at stumps, trailing Australia ‘A’ by 202 runs. Opener Mayank Agarwal, who is fine form, and his Karnataka team-mate R Samarth were batting on 31 and 10, respectively.

Brief scores: Australia ‘A’: 243 all out in 75.3 overs (Usman Khawaja 127, Marnus Labuschagne 60; Mohammed Siraj 8-59, Kuldeep Yadav 2-63) vs India ‘A’: 41 for no loss in 12 overs (Mayank Agarwal 31 batting). 

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