| Andre Russell is run out as Naman Ojha looks on, in Bangalore, on Sunday |
Bangalore: Yuvraj Singh struck a brutal 89-ball 123 to lead India A to a thumping 77-run victory over West Indies A in the first of the three-match One-day series, here, at the Chinnaswamy, on Sunday.
Handed a lifeline to return to the ODI team by being named captain of India A, Yuvraj produced a sensational exhibition of stroke-play, hitting eight fours and seven sixes in his scintillating innings to help India raise 312 for four after being put in to bat.
The match was reduced to 42-overs-a-side due to a two-hour delayed start on account of wet outfield.
India A then bowled out the visitors for 235 in 39.1 overs, which gives the home side a 1-0 lead in the series with the remaining two matches to be played at the same venue on September 17 and 19.
Chasing an imposing total, the visiting side lost the plot early in their reply as they were reduced to 58 for three in the 11th over. And after a brief recovery with a 54-run stand between Narsingh Deonarine (57) and Andre Fletcher (29), they again lost quick wickets to fold up for 235.
Ashley Nurse (57) was the other notable contributor for West Indies A, whose batsmen perished while going for quick runs.
For India A, R Vinay Kumar, Rahul Sharma, Yusuf Pathan and Sumit Narwal grabbed two wickets each, while pacer Jaydev Unadkat, too, got a wicket.
Earlier, Yuvraj tore apart the West Indies A bowling attack, unleashing his wide range of strokes after a cautious start.
The 31-year-old left-hander, who last played an international match in January, was simply superb with his drives on the up and also with the pulls, which were all about impeccable placement and timing.
Yuvraj was circumspect in the beginning, taking 39 balls to hit his first boundary and reaching his 50 in 61 balls. But in the next 19 balls, he raced to his century as a barrage of fours and sixes flowed from his blade, as the visiting bowlers had no clue how to contain him.
India A, however, had found themselves in a spot of bother after openers Unmukt Chand and Robin Uthappa, who were in fine form against New Zealand A side earlier in the month, returned to the pavilion with the scoreboard reading just 47.
Thereafter, Mandeep Singh (67) and Yuvraj shared a 100-run stand for the third wicket to resurrect the innings before the former was out in the 31st over. Yuvraj then added 125 runs for the fourth wicket from just 55 balls with Yusuf Pathan (70), who is also looking for a national team comeback.
Yuvraj whacked Nikita Miller for three sixes and a four to collect 23 runs in the 25th over to reach to 90.