Axar fifty pushes India A lead past 150
India A 417 for 8 (Mukund 72, Rayudu 71, Axar 69*, Piedt 5-191) lead South Africa A 260 by 157 runs
Axar Patel's unbeaten half-century helped India A stretch their lead past 150 in the second unofficial Test against South Africa in Wayanad where only 22 overs were possible on the third day because of rain.
Resuming on 342 for 6, the hosts lost Ankush Bains in the third over of the day. Bains, who added only a run to his overnight score of 34, was dismissed by seamer Hardus Viljoen. India A were dealt another blow an over later when offspinner Dane Piedt bowled Jayant Yadav to register his 12th five-wicket haul in first-class cricket.
At 348 for 8, the visitors must have fancied restricting India A's lead to under 100 runs, but Axar and Karn Sharma had other ideas. They put on an unbroken partnership of 69 runs even as Axar, who went to stumps on 69 off 93 balls, including 10 fours and two sixes, completed his fifth first-class half-century and equalled his highest score. Karn was unbeaten on 19.