India A 322 for 7 (Samson 73, Gurkeerat 65, Dhawan 56*) beat Bangladesh A 226 (Liton 75, Nasir 52, Gurkeerat 5-29, Aravind 3-29) by 96 runs

I was a bit worried about how I'll do - Gurkeerat
I was a bit worried about how I'll do - Gurkeerat

India A's robust lower middle order contributed three half-centuries to help the side to a strong total before their bowlers scuppered the visitors' chase.

Gurkeerat Singh had the biggest role in his team's victory as he followed up a fifty with five wickets, while Rishi Dhawan first smashed an unbeaten 56 off 34 balls and then claimed two wickets. Sanju Samson (73) and Mayank Agarwal (56) provided calmer counterpoints to the late-order blast that eventually ensued. Samson put on 102 runs with Gurkeerat for the sixth wicket, before adding 78 for the seventh with Dhawan.

Chasing 323, Bangladesh A were off to a wobbly start as left-arm seamer S Aravind dismissed the top three batsmen for a cumulative score of 34. The visitors were reduced to 87 for 5 after Dhawan removed Bangladesh A captain Mominul Haque and Sabbir Rahman. Bangladesh A, however, were roused by a 120-run alliance for the sixth wicket between Nasir Hossain (52) and Liton Das (75). But, once Gurkeerat removed both the batsmen in the space of three overs, the chase headed south, and they were bowled out with 7.3 overs still remaining.

While Nasir and Liton were at the crease, however, India A had a genuine scare, as the duo looked untroubled against spin and pace. This was significant given how Aravind had made things difficult by moving the ball sharply, even dismissing Soumya Sarkar and Anamul Haque with successive deliveries. Nasir and Liton mixed cheek and alacrity to ensure Bangladesh A's scoring rate never really sagged. However, wickets at the wrong time pushed them out of the game.

Earlier, having been inserted on a surface that had generous grass cover, India A began briskly. This was partly a result of Bangladesh A's largesse with the ball: Taskin Ahmed conceded 14 runs in wides in his first two overs even as Mayank Agarwal and captain Unmukt Chand breezed to 44 runs inside five overs. Taskin struck the first blow and sent Chand back. After bowling one that nipped back appreciably off a length, Taskin got one delivery to hold its line and Chand's airy waft was pouched by the keeper.

Meanwhile, Shafiul Islam, who was less profligate, used the bounce on offer judiciously and had Manish Pandey caught behind three overs later. Suresh Raina walked in to cheers from a sparse crowd and, along with Agarwal, sought to stabilise the innings.

While not always assured, Raina struck a couple of eye-catching cover-drives. But, Nasir trapped him in front of the stumps in the 16th over with one that didn't turn much, and Raina did not offer a more confident forward stride. Nasir was in the thick of things again four balls later, as he threw down the stumps to catch Kedar Jadhav short of the crease for a three-ball duck.

Agarwal, in the company of Samson, repeatedly played the slog-sweep, but also fell to the shot, finding the fielder at deep midwicket after scoring 56.

Samson continued to play steadily for his 73 even as Gurkeerat delighted in some street-smart play in his 65, bisecting Sarkar between point and short third man for successive boundaries. After Gurkeerat was trapped lbw by Arafat Sunny, Dhawan produced an innings that was an amalgam of hacks, dabs and squirts. His innings allowed India A to ransack 98 runs in the last 10 overs, aided by underwhelming fielding from Bangladesh A.

Arun Venugopal is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo