Third ‘Test’: Rajat Patidar scores 2nd ton, Ruturaj Gaikwad misses by 6 runs as India A close in on win | Cricket News

BENGALERU: Rajat PatidarThe dream season of got even better with a second rubber hundred while his teammate Ruturaj Gaikwad missed a ton by a hair as India A moved closer to a series win over New Zealand A in the third ‘test’ here.
While the previous two unofficial ‘tests’ of the three-game series ended in draws, largely due to bad weather, Priyank Panchal’s side opened up an opportunity as New Zealand A finished the third and penultimate day of 20 for one, chasing a mammoth 416.
After left arm spinner Saurabh Kumar was brought in early in the attack, he fired Rachin Ravindra to get the ball rolling.
That was after an impressive India A batting second inning, with only Abhimanyu Easwaran (8) failing to break the 50-run mark, as the hosts declared their second inning at 359 for seven.
Patidar continued his love affair with Chinnaswamy Stadium, smashing 109 of 135 balls, his third first-class hundred at the same venue in three months. Earlier, he scored one hundred here in the Ranji Trophy final, followed by 176 on his India debut a fortnight ago.
For Gaikwad, it was a memorable game as he completed his first set 108 with a delicious 94, which had 11 limits.
It was Joe Walker, who got him caught by Mark Chapman, but by then the CSK striker was involved in more than two centuries of partnerships – 122 with his skipper Priyank Panchal (62) for the second wicket and 102 with Patidar for the third wicket.
Patidar, who hit 13 fours and two sixes, then found a capable ally in Sarfaraz Khan (63 from 74 balls) and they added 108 runs in just 20 overs as India A sought a total of over 400 before leaving New Zealand A to fight for the last 90 minutes of the day.
Sarfaraz used his feet to good effect against Ravindra and Walker, hitting seven fours and two sixes in the process.
It was a nice move, but his failure in earlier matches might come back to haunt him, as the fifty came as the pressure was literally off.
Brief Notes: India A 293 and 359/7 decl (Rajat Patidar 109, Ruturaj Gaikwad 94, Priyank Panchal 62, Sarfaraz Khan 63, Rachin Ravindra 3/65)
New Zealand 237 and (Objective 416) 20/1 (Saurabh Kumar 1/13).

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