On the second day of the 1st unofficial Test between India A and England Lions at the Narendra Modi Stadium Ground A in Ahmedabad, Rajat Patidar emerged as the lone hero for the home side. Facing a daunting target set by England Lions, India A found themselves in a precarious situation at 95 for 7, with the rest of the batters struggling to make an impact.
Captain Abhimanyu Easwaran, along with other top-order batsmen, failed to get going, leaving Patidar to play a crucial innings. The Indian team’s batting collapse came in response to England Lions’ imposing total of 553 for 8 declared. Openers Abhimanyu Easwaran and B Sai Sudharsan were dismissed cheaply, and Sarfaraz Khan and Pradosh Ranjan Paul failed to contribute significant runs.
Even wicketkeeper-batter KS Bharat, part of the Test squad for the upcoming series against England, could only manage 15 runs. Amidst the batting woes, Rajat Patidar showcased resilience and aggression, scoring a rapid century in just 94 balls. Patidar’s hundred included a sensational six that brought up his milestone in style.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore star continued to display aggressive intent, amassing 140 runs off 132 balls in the final session, featuring 18 boundaries and 5 sixes. By the end of Day 2, India A reached 215 for 8, still trailing England Lions by 338 runs.
HUNDRED FOR RAJAT PATIDAR 🔥
Rajat Patidar continues his brilliant form for India A, he smashed hundred from just 94 balls when no one crossed 30 runs in the innings – he is making huge statements in all formats. 🇮🇳 pic.twitter.com/y6JwTKtE2M
— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) January 18, 2024
For Rajat Patidar, who had faced an Achilles heel injury and was out of competitive action for most of 2023, this innings marked a strong comeback. His performance in this unofficial Test follows a call-up to the India ODI team for the home series against South Africa in October 2022.
Despite not playing any games during that series, Patidar’s consistent performances for India A have now earned him recognition. This century by Patidar was his 12th in first-class cricket and the third for India A in 12 innings. In the practice match against England Lions last week, he had scored 111 runs.
ALSO READ: Ravi Bishnoi’s Super Over Heroics Seal Victory For India: Rohit’s Tactical Decision Turns The Tide
The stage is set for an intriguing continuation of the match, with Patidar’s innings offering a glimmer of hope for India A. On the first day, England Lions, led by Keaton Jennings, dominated the proceedings, amassing 553 for 8 declared in 118 overs. Jennings’ spectacular innings of 154 set the tone for the visitors, displaying a relentless attack on the Indian bowlers and forming formidable partnerships with his teammates.