Manish, Dhawal star in India A's win

Skipper Manish Pandey led from the front with a timely century while Dhawal Kulkarni showed his all-round prowess as India A defeated South Africa A by three wickets in the quadrangular one-day series here on Wednesday.

Manish Pandey anchored the innings with a brilliant unbeaten 100 off 105 deliveries which included nine boundaries and a six.   -  Getty Images

Skipper Manish Pandey led from the front with a timely century while Dhawal Kulkarni showed his all-round prowess as India A defeated South Africa A by three wickets in the quadrangular one-day series here on Wednesday.

Pandey anchored the innings with a brilliant unbeaten 100 off 105 deliveries which included nine boundaries and a six. He was ably supported by Kulkarni, who chipped in 23 as the pair added 47 runs for an unbroken eighth wicket stand after India A was in trouble at 187 for seven. Pandey secured victory for India with a boundary off left-arm spinner Aaron Phangiso securing.

Kulkarni also starred with the ball claiming four wickets and giving away only 37 runs from his quota of 10 overs. Supporting Kulkarni were Jaydev Unadkat and Hardik Pandya — both scalping two wickets apiece — while off-spinner Jayant Yadav and leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal were economical even though they went wicketless.

The Indian innings got off to a stable start with the openers Faiz Fazal (19) and Karun Nair (17) adding 41 runs in the first nine over but lost momentum, throwing away their wickets within four balls of each other to Andile Phehlukwayo in the 10th over. The Indian team continued to lose wickets at regular intervals during the intial part of their innings.

Mandeep Singh walked in at number four to join the skipper, but could only score 14. Kedar Jhadav (26) came in next and shared a 66-run partnership with Pandey, but lost his wicket to Qaasim Adams. Hardik Pandya (18) started well, but could not hang on for a long time.

After the 40th over, India A were struggling at 187 for seven with the skipper standing firm at one end and wickets dwindling at the other. The skipper found unlikely support in Kulkarni, who had earlier performed stupendously with the ball, helping India secure the key victory.

After the humiliating eight-wicket loss to Australia in its opening match, India A won the toss and chose to field first. The side was successful in restricting South Africa to a modest total of 230 runs.

The South African top order crumbled as they managed only 35 runs before losing four 4 wickets. Knocks by Theunis de Bruyn (40), David Miller (90) and Qaasim Adams(52) provided stability to the South African innings.

Brief scores: South Africa A 230 for eight in 50 overs (David Miller 90, Qaasim Adams 52, Dhawal Kulkarni four for 37, Jaydev Unadkat two for 32) lost to India A 234 for seven in 48.4 overs (Manish Pandey 100 n.o., Kedar Jadhav 26, Dhawal Kulkarni 23 n.o.) by seven wickets.

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