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Manoj Tiwary rescues India 'A', hosts post 369-9 in tour opener against England

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The first day of the warm up fixture between India A and England ended with both positives and negatives for either side. India A ended the day at 369/9 at a very healthy run rate of 4.10 after being 6 down for just 190. England, on the other hand, began well but would have liked to wrap up the tail rather quickly and start batting by the end of the day.

India A won the toss and chose to bat. Murali Vijay opened the innings with Abhinav Mukund, but was run out in the 7th over for just 7 to an underarm throw from Tim Bresnan. Rahane followed soon after as he tried to work one on the off side but was beaten by the extra bounce and caught at gully, with Bresnan once again getting in on the action. Meanwhile, Abhinav Mukund at the other end scored pretty quickly, he brought up his 50 in 57 balls hitting 12 fours. A number of his boundaries though came behind the wicket and despite getting some runs, he is unlikely to have impressed the selectors sufficiently.

England suffered their first blow of the tour when Steven Finn limped off during his fourth over due to a thigh injury that looked pretty serious. He will not play the rest of this match, but wth two weeks to go before the first test, Finn has enough time on his hands to recuperate to play some part on this Tour.

Mukund (73) was dismissed just before lunch by a good catch by Ian Bell at forward short leg off Graeme Swann's bowling.

Post lunch, at 113/3, Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina looked to knock the ball around. Raina fell pretty early (20) caught at forward short leg. Yuvraj looked in pretty good touch. Though he was lucky to survive what would have been a golden duck, that didn’t bother him at all. He attacked Samit Patel in his very first over hitting two fours and a mighty six. He managed a quickfire 54 (7*4s, 4*6s) before being stumped as he tried to hit Greame Swann for a six. Wriddhiman Saha walked in after that but was out leg before to a delivery from James Anderson that reverse swung. India A were in big trouble at 190/6. Irfan Pathan and Manoj Tiwary played cautiously till tea to take India 'A' into the break at 224/6.

Post tea, Tiwary and Pathan got a good partnership going. They both played carefully and displayed controlled strokeplay whilst notching up a partnership of 110 runs. Pathan was out leg before for 46. Tiwary was unlucky to be dismissed for 93 in the 86th over, which also saw Bresnan clean bowling Ashok Dinda first ball. Vinay Kumar and Parvinder Awana played out the remaining overs scoring 22 runs before play ended.

On the whole, the day belonged to India 'A' because their last five managed to pull back the game and notch up a reasonable total at the end of the day's play. However, most of the top order lost wickets trying to accelerate. Despite having a run rate of above 4, no one tried to settle down a play a long and patient innings. It was only after the fall of the 6th wicket that Manoj Tiwary and Irfan Pathan played in a controlled manner.

Swann was the pick of the bowlers taking 3 for 90. Bresnan too put on a lion hearted effort. It will be interesting to see how quickly England can claim the last wicket and how they go about scoring their runs against an all pace India A bowling attack tomorrow.

Mini Scorecard

India 'A' 1st Innings 369/9 (90 Overs, 4.10 rpo)
M Tiwary 93 (150) T Bresnan 3/59 
A Mukund 73 (83) G Swann 3/90