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Duleep Trophy | India Red bowlers make early inroads after Ankit Kalsi's slow century

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Duleep Trophy | India Red bowlers make early inroads after Ankit Kalsi's slow century

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SportsCafe Desk


Starting the day on 163/2, India Red ended with 285 runs thanks to an incredibly slow century by Ankit Kalsi before Jaydev Unadkat picked up two early wickets to keep India Red in the dominant position. Earlier, Karun Nair, in search of his first century in 22 Test innings, was dismissed on 99.

Brief scores: India Red 285 (Ankit Kalsi 106, Karun Nair 99; Diwesh Pathania 4-55) lead India Blue 74/3 (Jaydev Unadkat 2-18) by 211 runs.

After resuming the innings on 90, Nair was starring at his first century in almost two years. He started on a confident note too as he played out 34 deliveries to move from 90 to 99 but in almost an ironic manner, he was stumped one short of a century off the bowling of Saurabh Kumar in the 78th over. While Nair gave his all in his innings, Kalsi's approach brought questions about his approach as he took 339 balls to cross the three-figure mark while wickets were tumbling at the other end thanks to Diwesh Pathania.

At the time of Nair's dismissal, India Red were on 180 and needed a batsman to cut loose. However, Harpreet Singh Bhatia's 20-ball 2 and Kalsi's Cheteshwar Pujara avatar didn't help the cause until Ishan Kishan decided to make the atmosphere lighter with a dizzyling batting display, at least on the day's standard. The Jharkhand keeper scored a half-century off 76 balls. 

The lower order was not of great help for Kalsi's cause as Akshay Wakhare and Varun Aaron were able to manage just four runs between them. With Kalsi's ton in danger, he decided to take his chance and a four eventually took him over the magic line and Red ended the day with 285.

India Blue's surge didn't start in the perfect way as Jaydev Unadkat managed to nip out Snell Patel and Shubman Gill. Ruturaj Gaikwad looked solid during his stay and took the score past 50 but with ten minutes to go, he was dismissed by the Saurashtra pacer. 

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