Saurabh Kumar stars as India ‘A’ beat New Zealand ‘A’ to win series | Cricket News

BENGALURU: Rolling a five-wicket course from the left arm spinner Saurabh KumarIndia ‘A’ won the last four day game against New Zealand ‘A’ by 113 points in the M Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Sunday.
With the first two matches ending in a draw, the side managed by Priyank Panchal won the series 1-0. Aimed for 416 runs, the visitors fell back for 302 in 85.2 overs with fly-half Joe Carter’s valiant century (111, 230b, 12×4, 1×6) to no avail.
Resuming the day on 20/1, New Zealand ‘A’ lost night watchman Joe Walker early in the chase with mid pace Shardul Thakur uprooting his stumps at fifth over.
But Carter, along with Dane Cleaver (44), resurrected the innings with an 85-run partnership.
Saurabh, who played disciplined line and length throughout the sets, reaped the rewards when he trapped Cleaver’s leg before. Mark Chapman (45) then worked the home team bowlers, and to India’s disadvantage they were one bowler short with Rahul Chahar who came out with a rebuke after bowling just one bowler.
Since the ball stayed low and provided a nice turn, the leggie could have helped India wrap up the game early. The visitors fought hard to save the game and were 221/4 at tea.
The advantage swung in the hosts’ favor in the final session, with Saurabh securing a good buy from the wicket by varying his pace. He found broad support from part-time spinner Sarfaraz Khan (2/48), who represented dangerman Chapman and Robert Donnell.
Carter then evoked his century in style by sending a Saurabh delivery to the longtime frontier. New Zealand’s lower order struggled with low deliveries and front leg layoffs were the order of the day.
Satisfied with the team’s performance, head coach Shitanshu Kotak stressed the importance of the series.
“For us, it’s a development program. We want players to get this platform from which they can enter the senior team. We try to rotate players and give opportunities to each series. We don’t always try to win matches, but with the quality of the players, we haven’t lost a series for 3-4 years. We won three series and a few were drawn.
SCORE : India ‘A’ 293 & 359/7 claimed to beat New Zealand ‘A’ 237 & 302 in 85.2 overs (Joe Carter 111, Mark Chapman 45; Saurabh Kumar 5-103, Sarfaraz Khan 2-48)

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