Spinners struck late to give India ‘A’ the upperhand as South Africa ‘A’ slumped to 159 for five in their first innings at stumps on day two of the second unofficial Test here on Wednesday.
Earlier resuming at 233 for 3, the home team made 417 all out in 123 overs with captain Wriddhiman Saha (60) and Mumbai all-rounder Shivam Dube (68, 84 balls, 10x4s, 1×6) joining Shubman Gill (92) and Karun Nair (78) as half-century makers.
Right-arm medium-pacer Wiaan Mulder (3/47) and Dane Piedit (3/78) took three wickets each for the visitors.
Skipper Aiden Markram (83 batting, 140 balls, 12x4s) put South Africa ‘A’ in a good position before the spin duo of Kuldeep Yadav (2/51) and Shahbaz Nadeem (2/41) triggered a slide from 102 for one to 142 for five.
The highly-rated Markram, tipped as a future leader, showed his class and in the company of Theunis de Bruyn (41, 54 balls, 5x4s, 1×6) added 82 runs for the second wicket, during which they negotiated the India ‘A’ attack rather comfortably.
Nadeem got the breakthrough, castling de Bruyn, a reward for his consistency.
Khayelihle Zondo lasted just 12 balls, before being dismissed by Nadeem for five.
Kuldeep, who is part of the India Test squad for the South Africa series beginning in October, kept the rival batsmen guessing and dismissed Senuran Muthusamy (12) and Heinrich Klaasen (2) in the space of six runs to leave the visitors in trouble.
South Africa ‘A’ ended the day at 159 for five, still trailing their opponents by 258 runs.
Earlier when India ‘A’ resumed, Karun Nair fell without adding any runs to his overnight score of 78, nicking one from Mulder to wicket-keeper Klaasen.
Saha and Dube then added 47 runs for the fifth wicket before the former fell to Vernon Philander (1/45).
Dube and Jalaj Saxena (48 not out) put on 63 runs for the sixth wicket with the Mumbai left-hander showing a lot of enterprise. Dube hit some lovely shots and one big six.
The home team’s lower-order batsmen extended South ‘A’ bowlers misery as Saxena and Umesh Yadav (24) put on 35 runs for the ninth wicket.
India ‘A’ 1st innings: 417 all out (Shubman Gill 92, Karun Nair 78, Shivam Dube 68, Wriddhiman Saha 60, Jalaj Saxena 48 not out, Umesh Yadav 24; Wiaan Mulder 3/47, Dane Piedt 3/78).
South Africa ‘A’: 159 for 5 in 46 overs (Aiden Markram 83 batting, Theunis de Bruyn 41; Shahbaz Nadeem 2/41, Kuldeep Yadav 2/51).