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Windies A beat India A by 166 runs in tri-series

Northampton: India A started their cricket tri-series campaign on a disastrous note as they slumped to a humiliating 166-run defeat at the hands of West Indies A side in the opening match at the County Ground here.

Sent into bat, West Indies piled up a mammoth 329 for six in their 50 overs yesterday, thanks to captain Devon Smith`s breezy 98-ball 104 and Andre Fletcher`s 88.

Chasing the huge target, the Indians batsmen never got into the act and lost wickets at regular intervals to ultimately skittle out for a paltry 163 in 33.2 overs with Jaskaran Singh top-scoring with a 45-ball 51.

Openers Abhinav Mukund (12) and Ajinkya Rahane (23) failed to provide India a blistering start, which was required to chase down the stiff target, while hard-hitter Manish Pandey (14) also disappointed at the one-down position.

Skipper Cheteshwar Pujara tried to resurrect the Indian innings with a patient 31 off 51 balls before Jaskaran came out with a gutsy display.

But once Jaskaran, who cracked three fours and as many sixes, was dismissed Imran Khan (1/16), the end was inevitable for India.

Anthony Martin was the pick of the West Indian bowlers, scalped three wickets for 47 runs, while Lionel Baker bagged two for 32.

Earlier, the West Indian opening duo of Smith and Fletcher gave a solid start to their innings by producing a 193-run partnership. Smith cracked 14 fours during his three-digit score while Fletcher adorned his 93-ball innings with 11 fours.

West Indies lost their first wicket when pacer Abhimanyu Mithun (1/49) removed Fletcher in the 31st over and then Jaskaran, who scalped two wickets for 73 runs, dismissed Kirk Edwards (2) cheaply in the next over.

Then two run outs in quick succession saw Smith and Assad Fudadin (10) departing back to the pavilion.

However, Kevin Stoute (52 not out) and Andre Russell (42) added 71 runs for the sixth wicket before the latter fell prey to Jaidev Unadkat (1/73).

PTI

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