The India A and the New Zealand A team played out a fantastic 42-over match that ended in a tie at Vishakapatnam. The game was reduced to that amount owing to the rain that threatened to curtail the game entirely early on. The two teams however put on a show in the match that was enjoyed by the spectators.
Batting first, the New Zealanders scored 269 for 6, after riding on a century from Glenn Phillips who smashed a century. As the Indians came on to bat, they looked like they would not even make a contest of it after they were reeling at 84-5.
However, Shreyas Iyer and Ankit Bawne showed their mettle and played out a 126-run partnership that bought India back into the game. In the 30th over, it was 65 needed off just 72 balls and looked like a simple chase.
However, the brilliant Todd Astle (4 for 22) and Kuggeleijn (3 for 56) pegged things back. The likes of Mayank Agarwal, Shreevats Goswami and Prithvi Shaw got starts but could not capitalise. Iyer’s 90 off just 73 balls showed that that he is fast becoming a hot prospect but he fell at a crucial stage.
At that stage, India looked out of it, but Iyer and Bawne got together to diffuse the pressure with a solid 126-run partnership and bring India back in the game. By the 30th over, the equation came down to 65 needed off 72 balls, and with wickets in hand, it suddenly looked like a simple chase.
After the dismissals of Karn Sharma and Shardul Thakur, Bawne took an aggressive approach by hitting boundaries all around the park. He was aided by some sensible batting by number 10, Shahbaz Nadeem, who let the more experienced batsman take most of the strike. Their 36-run partnership was ended in the penultimate over to add more drama to the story.
However, with 11 needed off the last over and 8 off 2 balls, Bawne hit a huge six but could only manage a single in the last ball as the game ended in a tie. He ended up with a superb 83 off 80.