NZ A succumbs to Indian spinners

Shahbaz Nadeem and Karn Sharma shared eight wickets between them to give India A the upper hand over New Zealand A in the first four-day ‘Test’.

New Zealand A opener George Worker walks off after being caught at short leg off Karn Sharma.   -  V. Raju

Left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem and leg-spinner Karn Sharma picked four wickets each to give India A the upper hand on the first day of its first four-day ‘Test’ against New Zealand A at the Mulapadu Cricket Complex here on Saturday.

India was 71 for 2 at stumps, after its opponent was bowled out for 147. Kiwi leggie Ish Sodhi struck twice in the final session but the home team ensured there were no more setbacks thanks to a disciplined effort from opener R. Samarth.

Earlier, New Zealand lost its way after a decent start when openers George Worker (33, 56b, 4 x 4) and Jeet Raval (34, 55b, 3 x 4, 1 x 6) dropped anchor. They looked to be making the most of dropped chances before Nadeem forced Worker on to the back foot and snared him at forward short-leg, and pacer Md. Siraj had Jeet Raval shouldering arms to a lethal inswinger.

The two quick blows effectively pushed the Kiwis on the defensive and soon they were in more serious trouble as Nadeem struck regularly. At one stage, they were reeling at 81 for 6 in 29.3 overs before a fighting 50-run stand between Tim Seifert (35 not out) and Scott Kuggeleijn (17) lent some respectability.

The resistance was broken by Sharma, who induced a mistimed on-drive from Kuggeliej, and New Zealand was bowled out soon after.

The scores:

New Zealand A 147 (Worker 33, Raval 34, Seifert not out 35; Sharma 4 for 58, Nadeem 4 for 39) leads India A 71 for 2 (Samarth 38, Panchal 14) by 76 runs.

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