India’s bowlers hammered in tour opener


India’s bowlers were hammered as front-line paceman Ishant Sharma came off with an injury on the opening day of their two-day game against a Chairman’s XI at Manuka Oval in Canberra on Thursday.
Wes Robinson and Tom Cooper scored centuries to steer their selection to 398 for six declared off 86 overs.
Robinson hit 143 off 215 balls with six sixes and 13 fours, while Cooper was unbeaten on 182 off 194 balls with 24 boundaries and three sixes.
The pair shared in a 226-run stand for the third wicket.
India’s preparations for the opening Boxing Day Test against Australia in Melbourne were unsettled by an ankle injury to striker bowler Ishant Sharma.
Three balls into his sixth over and nearing lunch Sharma took his hat from the umpire and walked off the ground.
India’s bowlers had a torrid time against Robinson and Cooper with off-spinner Pragyan Ojha going for two for 149 off 25.3 overs, while Rohit Sharma went wicketless for 56 runs off eight overs.
Skipper Rahul Dravid won the toss and sent the Chairman’s XI into bat but had to wait until the 10th over before paceman Umesh Yadav made the first breakthrough having Ryan Broad out caught behind for eight.
Joe Burns was bowled by Ojha for 21 before Cooper and Robinson hit out against the Indian attack.
The prolific partnership was finally broken by Ojha, with Sachin Tendulkar taking the catch to dismiss Robinson.
Alex Doolan became Yadav’s second victim when he was out lbw for 29 and Yadav got his third wicket two balls later when he also trapped Glenn Maxwell leg before.
Dean Solway made just five before he was caught behind off seamer Vinay Kumar.
Yadav finished the best among the Indian bowlers with three for 39 from 15 overs.
Following the declaration at stumps, it will be India’s turn to bat on Friday’s second and final day to get solid time in the middle for their Test stars Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Gautam Gambhir and V.V.S. Laxman.


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