India ‘A’ cantered to a six-wicket win over New Zealand ‘A’ after bundling the visitors out for 143 in the third game in Vizag. Karn Sharma wrecked the middle order to finish with five for 22 while Deepak Hooda picked two wickets to help put the hosts in a commanding position. Although India ‘A’ then lost three quick wickets, Vijay Shankar complimented by Shreyas Iyer and Hooda took the home team to the finish line. With a comprehensive win in the third one-day game, India ‘A’ now lead the five-match series 1-0.
Earlier, Hooda sent back George Worker for 22 to end the opening partnership for 39 after the visitors opted to bat. Having made an early dent in the lineup, the Indians continued to strike at regular intervals. 16 runs later, Basil Thampi dismissed Colin Munro and five overs later Shankar castled Glenn Phillips to leave NZ ‘A’ on 74 for three. Henry Nicholls and Tom Bruce’s efforts to rebuild the innings were ended by Karn, who claimed the latter to leave the visitors on 97 for four.
Chasing the 144-run target, Prithvi Shaw was sent back by Todd Astle leaving the home team on 10 for one. After 13 runs, Mayank Agarwal was removed by Lockie Ferguson while Shreevats Goswami was bowled by Ish Sodhi in the next over.
With the team on 23 for three, Vijay Shankar joined Shreyas Iyer. The middle-order batsmen added runs at a quick pace until Sodhi struck again to end the fourth-wicket stand for 64 runs.
The leg-spinner claimed the key wicket of the India ‘A’ captain for 37 (off 36 balls). Comfortably placed with 57 runs needed off 192 deliveries, Hooda joined Vijay Shankar in taking India ‘A’ to the finish line. With an unbroken 57-run partnership, the duo helped the team seal the first win of the series.