Ishan Porel leads India 'A' fightback following Stuurman four-fer

On the morning of the third day of the second four-day game against India A at the Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein, Glenton Stuurman was the highlight of an outstanding bowling effort by South Africa A, which helped keep the hosts in front by 137 runs at stumps. The game was finely poised at the start of the day’s play, with India A on 198/5 and Hanuma Vihari (54) and Sarfaraz Khan (71) in good form at the crease, before Marco Jansen (3 – 44) broke their 60-run stand early on, while Stuurman took two wickets to further stall India A’s progress in chasing down South Africa’s first innings score of 297.

India was eventually dismissed for 276 (21 runs behind) thanks to a run-out by George Linde and Raynard van Tonder, as well as a wicket from Linde’s (1–58) slow-left armers, with Khan left stranded on a well-played 71 not out off 94 balls (8 fours, 2 sixes), while Stuurman finished with figures of 4 – 48.

With a slim lead on the scoreboard, SA A began their second innings on a positive note, with openers Sarel Erwee (41) and Pieter Malan (31) adding 69 runs for the first wicket. Despite losing Erwee in the 17th over, van Tonder (33) took up the mantle alongside Malan before the latter was run out, leaving the South Africans on 98/2.

Sensing an opportunity to strike, India A took three wickets for 17 runs through Ishan Porel (2–17) and Baba Aparajith (1–1) as the SA A side reached stumps on 116/ 5 with a strong 137-run advantage ahead of an exciting final day’s play.