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August 30, 2013
New Zealand A 310 (Ronchi 125, Astle 63, Saxena 6-106) drew with India A 388 for 7 (Zol 110, Nayar 102*, Astle 3-106)
Centuries from Vijay Zol and captain Abhishek Nayar ensured India A held on for a draw against New Zealand A in Visakhapatnam on the final day. Zol also brought up a maiden century on first-class debut in the process.
Responding to a strong first-innings total of 310, thanks largely to Luke Ronchi's 125, India began the third day on 6 for 1 after Unmukt Chand fell late on the second day. Sarabjit Ladda, the nightwatchman, fell in the 18th over to leave India at 49 for 2.
In came Zol, who has been in red-hot form having posted scores of 128, 173 and 128 in the last few months, and along with Jiwanjot Singh, constructed a partnership of 77 for the third wicket.
Jiwanjot fell just two short of his half-century, bringing Manprit Juneja to the crease. Zol continued going from strength to strength, putting on a 97-run stand for the fourth wicket with Juneja. When Juneja was dismissed on 43 by Todd Astle, India were 77 behind the New Zealand total.
Abhishek Nayar stepped in and played a responsible knock, aiding Zol to a century on his first-class debut. Zol was bowled by Carl Cachopa after the pair had added 60 runs,. A small string of partnerships followed, as India looked to bat out time till stumps. Nayar stayed unbeaten on 102, while Astle was the pick of the bowlers with 3 for 106.
The teams are scheduled to meet again for a four-day match on the same ground from September 2.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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After the tragedy of Phillip Hughes' death, this match showed that cricket and life will continue to go on. This time Test cricket dug in and got through to tea.
Virat Kohli's innings on the final day transcended the conditions, the bowlers and his batting partners, and when it was all in vain, he displayed remarkable grace in defeat
Both batsmen seemingly have buckets of talent at their disposal and the backing of their captains, but soft dismissals relentlessly follow both around the Test arena
Josh Hazlewood has been on Australian cricket's radar since he was a teenager. The player that made a Test debut at the Gabba was a much-improved version of the tearaway from 2010
The new stand-in captain has the makings of a long-term leader, given his ability to stay ahead of the game
Turning your back on a system that the whole cricketing world wants a discussion on, refusing to discuss it because it is not 100%, is not good enough
The failed gamble of handing Karn Sharma a Test debut despite him having a moderate first-class record means India have to rethink who their spinner will be
After a long time we have seen an Indian team and captain enjoy the challenge of trying to overcome stronger opposition in an overseas Test