India A recently completed their tour of South Africa and it was the young and talented Shreyas Iyer who made headlines once again, winning the Man of the Match in the final of the tri-series between the A teams of South Africa, Afghanistan & India.
The tri-series began on 26th July, on a losing note for India as the hosts won by 2 wickets in a low scoring encounter. However, there was no looking back for India A after that, as they thrashed Afghanistan A twice and then beat the home team as well, booking a spot in the final of the tri-series.
Shreyas Iyer had scores of 0, 20, 44 and 9 in his four innings of the round robin stage, being tried as an opener as well as a middle order batsman. He wasn’t able to bring his best performances during those games, but the India A captain Manish Pandey was doing pretty well with the bat.
Pandey scored 55 in the first game, followed by 41*, 86*, 93* and 32* in the final, playing a captain’s knock in every game, including two Man of the Match awards and being dismissed just once in the entire series. He ended as the highest scorer in the tournament, with 307 runs at a staggering average of 307!
However, it was that man Shreyas Iyer who stole the thunder in the final, saving his best for last. Chasing 268 against South Africa A in the final, Shreyas came in at a tough time when the score was 8-1, but he played a magnificent innings that was paced perfectly.
140 not out in 131 balls is what he achieved, hitting 11 fours and 4 sixes, including hitting the winning runs with a boundary and helping his country win the title. The Delhi Daredevils batsman ended his series with 213 runs at an average of 53+.
While we’re hopeful of seeing Manish Pandey and Shreyas Iyer scoring heavily for the India senior team very soon, there were a couple of bowlers who did well there too – Shardul Thakur with 9 wickets and Siddarth Kaul with 9 wickets.
Well done Team India!
The series isn’t done as India A stay back to play two unofficial tests, which begin on 12th August. Stay tuned to our Cricket Scoops section for more on that series!