Sharma proves his fitness in farcical draw

December 21st, 2011 - 3:19 pm ICT by IANS  

Virender Sehwag Canberra, Dec 21 (IANS) The final day of the drawn three-day warm-up game here at the Manuka Oval between Indians and the Cricket Australia (CA) Chairman’s XI turned farcical as Ishant Sharma, who was not even in the 13-man squad, bowled to prove that he is on track to lead the attack on Boxing Day Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).

The Indian team management requested Chairman’s XI to allow Ishant bowl on the final day here Wednesday. Ishant wasn’t included in the original 13-man squad to play at Manuka Oval because of his ankle injury.

Ishant’s inclusion became a farce and to add to it three nonsensical declarations on the final day ensured it will be a hard to explain in the record books.

David Warner’s Chairman’s XI declared their first innings at 215 for seven overnight, meaning they trailed India’s first innings score of 269 by 54 runs.

India declared at 90 for two after Virender Sehwag (8) and Ajinkya Rahane departed in quick successions. Gautam Gambhir remained unbeaten on 42 and Rohit Sharma on 38.

Set a target of 145 to win, Usman Khawaja and Phil Hughes, motivated by their axings from the Test side, gave the Chairman’s XI a good start. But surprisingly both the teams decided to end the match when Chairman’s XI were 100 for no loss and with nearly two hours of play left. Khawaja made 56 not out and Hughes an unbeaten 42.

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