Priyank Panchal, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Rahul Chahar lead India A to innings win

Priyank Panchal led India A from the front
India A v Sri Lanka A, 1st four-day game, Belgavi May 27, 2019

India A 622 for 5 decl (Abhimanyu 233, Panchal 160, Anmolpreet 116*, Vishwa Fernano 2-83) beat Sri Lanka A 232 (Dickwella 103, Chahar 4-78) and 185 (Samarawickrama 48, Chahar 4-45) by an innings and 205 runs

India A completed a three-day rout of Sri Lanka A in their first four-day match in Belgavi, courtesy compelling batting performances from captain Priyank Panchal, Abhimanyu Easwaran and Anmolpreet Singh, and Rahul Chahar's wizardry with the ball.

Panchal and Abhimanyu set the tone with a 352-run opening stand on the first day that paved the way for India A's declaration after scoring a mammoth 622 for 5. Panchal, who made 160 of those runs, carried on his good form from the series against England Lions in February, where he registered scores of 206 and 50 in the two four-day games.

Abhimanyu, meanwhile, recorded a career-best 321-ball 233 - his second double-century - to leave his mark and give the selectors another option for the top of the batting order in Test cricket, outside of the current top three - KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal and Prithvi Shaw.

Anmolpreet registered a fourth first-class century in just his 15th game. His unbeaten 116 took his career average to an impressive 54.95. It's these batting performances that gave India A the cushion of enforcing the follow-on, which was made possible courtesy legspinner Chahar's four-wicket haul in the first innings.

Despite boasting of a number of international cricketers in their ranks, all Sri Lanka A managed was 232 in 62.4 overs, with Niroshan Dickwella, the Test wicketkeeper, top-scoring with a typically aggressive 113-ball 103. The next best was the 49 made by Ashan Priyanjan, the captain. Chahar's efforts were backed up by Sandeep Warrier and allrounder Shivam Dube, who picked up two wickets apiece.

In the second innings, Sri Lanka A fared worse. Facing a 390-run deficit, they slumped to 4 for 3 courtesy Ankit Rajpoot and Warrier. Priyanjan and Sadeera Samarawickrama led a brief revival, before they fell to Chahar again. The 20-year-old, who enjoyed a breakout IPL season with Mumbai Indians, picked up four more wickets to take his match tally to an impressive 8 for 123. Rajpoot, Warrier and offspinner Jayant Yadav got two wickets each too.

The second four-dayer will be played in Hubli from May 31.

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