Usman Khawaja Guides Australia A Home in a Rain-Marred Encounter
Australia A opener Usman Khawaja scored a swashbuckling hundred to guide his team to a five-wicket win over India B in a rain-marred encounter.
Meanwhile, rain saw the target reduced to 247, but the visitors went home comfortably. Jack Wildermuth paired with Khawaja to bring Australia A their second win the quadrangular series.
Batting first, India B rode on skipper Manish Pandey’s hundred to post 276 runs on the board. The host once again got to a good start banking on in-form Mayank Agarwal and Ishan Kishan. The pair added 58 runs for the first wicket before Agarwal (36) departed.
Shubman Gill followed soon as India were reeling at 64 for 2. However, Pandey, who was going through a lean patch cashed in when his team needed the most. He steadied the ship from one end as India B kept on losing wicket from the other. But Pandey kept the strike on himself to bring his hundred with the help of seven boundaries and three sixes. Furthermore, a late contribution from Deepak Hooda of 30 runs saw the hosts post 276 runs at the halfway mark.
In reply, Australia A got off to a smashing start with both openers returning to form. Khawaja and Alex Carey dominated the proceeding as India’s new ball bowlers struggled to find the length. India B tasted first success when Jalaj Saxena castled Carey’s (23) timber. Since then, the visitor’s lost four wickets in quick span before rain stopped the on-field proceedings.
But, Australia A were quick to take an upper hand as the game restarted. They chased down the target quite convincingly with Khawaja scoring a magical hundred. He remained unbeaten on 101 runs including 10 boundaries while Wildermuth played a valuable hand of 65 runs.
Meanwhile, despite this loss, India B has better run-rate over Australia A to grab the top spot in the table.
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