Duleep Trophy: Nair, Kalsi hold fort as India Red takes honours on day three

Follow the LIVE scores and updates from the Day 3 of the Duleep Trophy match between India Blue and India Red from Bangalore.

Ankit Bawane leads India Blue's reply against India Red. (File Picture)   -  Sudhakara Jain

Good morning, welcome to Sportstar's live coverage of Day 3 of the Duleep Trophy match between India Blue and India Red being played in Alur, Bangalore.

UPDATES

Our reporter at the venue Ashwin Achal updates: Karun Nair looks in fantastic touch. He looks supremely confident, reverse sweeping the dangerous Jalaj Saxena. His partner Ankit Kalsi, who made a slow 345-ball 106 in the first essay, is more positive this time around. Kalsi is keen to get a move on, picking the gaps with ease.

Our reporter at the venue Ashwin Achal updates: Jaydev Unadkat gets last man Basil Thampi lbw and screams in delight. Ankit Bawane finishes unbeaten on 121 but India, all out for 255, has conceded a 30-run first-innings lead. IMPORTANT: If this match ends in a draw - it most likely will - India Red will seal a final berth.

- CENTURY FOR ANKIT BAWANE! The Maharashtra batsman's currently batting on 110, he has held the innings together after the team lost four for 15. India Blue 237 for eight, trails India Red by 48 runs.

- India Blue has slumped to 208 for eight! It has lost four for 15, with Avesh Khan taking three wickets and Akshay Wakhare bowling Saurabh Kumar. Ankit Bawne is unbeaten on 86, but this has been a remarkable turnaround after a wicket-less morning session and India Blue reducing the arrears. India Blue 208 for eight, trailing by 77 runs.

- WICKET! India Red gets a wicket soon after lunch. Anmolpreet Singh is out caught for 56 off the bowling of Akshay Wakhare. India Blue 193 for four. New batsman is Ricky Bhui, who's joined Ankit Bawne.

- LUNCH! India Blue has reached 193 for three, a deficit of 92 runs with seven wickets in hand.

- FIFTY for Anmolpreet Singh! The right-hander's batting on 56, playing the ideal foil for Ankit Bawne, who's on 82.

- Our reporter at the venue Ashwin Achal updates: India Red's bowling attack has been unable to make an impression on Ankit Bawne and Anmolpreet Singh. The India Blue duo has kept it simple, not been troubled at all. Bawne and Anmolpreet have been confident on the frontfoot. With the much offering little assistance for the bowlers, diving off the frontfoot is a safe option.

- Ankit Bawane and Anmolpreet Singh have brought up their 100-run partnership; they have now added 109 runs for the fourth wicket. India Blue 173 for three, trailing India Red by 112 runs with seven wickets in hand. Bawane is batting on 73, with Anmolpreet on 45.

- FIFTY for Ankit Bawane! The Maharashtra batsman is now batting on 57, with Anmolpreet Singh on 36. India Blue 148 for three, trailing India Red by 137 runs with seven wickets in hand.

- Ankit Bawne and Anmolpreet Singh have ensured India Blue hasn't lost a wicket in the opening hour. The former's closing in on a half-century, while Anmolpreet has moved on to 26. India Blue is 127 for three, trailing India Red by 158 runs with seven wickets in hand.

- India Blue is 91 for three, trailing India Red by 194 runs. Ankit Bawane (22 not out) and Anmolpreet Singh (15 not out) have put together 27 runs for the fourth wicket so far.

Day 2 report

A marathon knock from Ankit Kalsi (106, 345b, 8x4) kept India Red afloat on the second day of its Duleep Trophy encounter against India Blue at the Alur ground here on Saturday.

India Red, on the back of Kalsi’s century and a 77-ball 50 from Ishan Kishan, made 285 in its first essay. In reply, India Blue moved to 74 for three.

Kalsi displayed tremendous patience and temperament during the course of his 466-minute vigil at the crease. The southpaw presented a dead, straight bat to anything on the stumps, and carefully drove the overpitched stuff all along the ground.

The Himachal Pradesh batsman was in danger of missing his hundred, when he was left with only last man Avesh Khan for company. A thick inside edge off pacer Diwesh Pathania, however, gave Kalsi the three runs needed to reach the three-figure mark.

The 25-year-old, who had racked up runs in the 2018-19 Ranji Trophy season, was the last man to go, edging one from off-spinner Jalaj Saxena to Ruturaj Gaikwad. Gaikwad had given Kalsi a reprieve on 34, when he put down a regulation chance at slip.

Karun Nair, on 92 overnight, fell one run short of what would have been his maiden first-class century in two years. Left-arm spinner Saurabh Kumar drew Karun out of his crease, and wicketkeeper Snell Patel whipped off the bails to get him stumped.

Services speedster Pathania (four for 55) and Saxena (three for 57) starred for India Blue. Pathania brought the game to life in the afternoon session, when he took out the dangerous Kishan and Axar Patel (0) off successive balls. While Kishan’s entertaining fifty ended with a lazy waft outside off, Axar lost his stumps to an inswinging beauty.

Saxena toiled hard, keeping a tight line and length. His pace variations troubled the batsmen no end, and was unlucky to have not gotten a better return.

India Blue did not have a good time with the bat as left-arm seamer Jaydev Unadkat dismissed Snell Patel (0) and Shubman Gill (9) cheaply. Gaikwad made a fluent 37, before fast bowler Avesh managed to induce a nick late in the day.

Play was affected by intermittent showers, which caused a couple of short delays. The ground, equipped with a good drainage system, coped well. The action was extended till 6 p.m. to make up for the lost time.