India A v Australia A Final review: Gurkeerat Singh powers India A to Tri-series victory
Updated - Aug 14, 2015 3:31 pm
India A v Australia A Final review: Gurkeerat Singh powers India A to Tri-series victory: When the Australians came to the field at the MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai, they had their sights set on the Tri-series trophy which now was just one step away from them. They had magnificently marched ahead in the pre-final stages of the tournament and were unbeaten in the tournament so far. Coming into the match they were the hot favorites to lift the trophy. Though the Aussie openers were a bit scratchy to start with but when they crossed the 80 run mark after the 13 overs they looked set to amass a big total on the board.
But, today was the day of Gurkeerat Singh Mann. Whatever he touched turned into gold, when Indian skipper Unmukt Chand handed him the white cherry he delivered instantly as he outsmarted the Aussie opener Joe Burns who handed Gurkeerat a simple return catch. On the other hand, the lucky Australian skipper Usman Khawaja lived dangerously on the wicket but somehow he survived.
After Burns departed the tourists could never accelerate the innings as they lost the momentum and grip over the Indians. The bowling has been India’s biggest concern in the tournament. But, today the Indian spinners spun around a web and wrecked the Australian innings. From 138/1, the Aussies were reduced to 190/6 which tilted the match completely in favor of the Indian boys. Leggie Karn Sharma proved too hot to handle as he outwitted Khawaja, Head and Wade with his deceptive flight. The Australians could manage only 226 runs on the board after 50 overs.
The Indian spinning quartet which included Karn Sharma, Axar Patel, Karun Nair, and Gurkeerat Singh bowled as many as 39 overs between them and took eight wickets. Rahul Dravid was a happy man seeing his spinners tearing apart the Australian batting line-up. Now the Indian team knew that they were just a step away from raising the Tri-series trophy and defeating the invincible Australians who hadn’t tasted a single loss till now in the tournament.
That is how the limited overs tournament goes about. Whatever you have done previously doesn’t get a reckoning as only the better team on the ultimate day is crowned as the champions. Australians had a stiff task at their disclosure but giving up is never in their blood and who would know this thing better than the India A Coach Rahul Dravid.
When the Indians came out to bat, the openers came with all the guns blazing. Mayank Agarwal and Unmukt Chand rallied India’s total past the 50 run mark in almost no time. Now, a victory didn’t look too distant. But, then India’s belligerent run-scorer of the tournament Agarwal got run-out in one of the most unlucky ways. He was inside the crease but in order to avoid the throw he jumped in the air and Lynn’s throw from the point was spot on to disturb the bails. And then Indian batting got derailed as they lost their next 4 wickets in matter of 49 runs. Unmukt Chand and Kedar Jadhav got out playing reckless shots while Karun Nair and Manish Pandey couldn’t cross the single figure mark.
With the Indian A side reeling at 108/5, they needed further 119 runs to win the match. The match was evenly poised as either of the team could have won the match form that point. But as they say cometh the hour cometh the champion. Gurkeerat Singh then launched barrel of late cuts, nudges, and drives to keep the Indian hopes alive in the match. On 142 runs India lost their 6th wicket in form of Axar Patel which made the match even more stimulating.
But certainly not for the Aussie camp as after that wicket fell, there was no looking back for Gurkeerat. He emerged as the star of the match as he single-handedly triumphed India to victory. His 85 ball 87 run knock was a compilation of a perfect limited overs knock in which at times he defended while as and when the opportunity arrived to his sight he cut loose as well. In this way the not so favorites of the Tri-series Final match Indians rose to the occasion and thereby won the tournament Final by 4 wickets.
Australia A – 226-9 in 50 overs (U Khwaja 76; A Patel 2-25)
India A – 226-6 in 43.3 overs (G Singh 87; A Agar 2-39) won by 4 wickets.