Useful contributions from Ben Duckett and Sam Hains helped England Lions dominate the opening day of the first unofficial Test against India A at the Krishnagiri Stadium, Wayanad, Kerala. 

Meanwhile, Max Holden and Duckett provided a good start after India A skipper Ankit Bawne opted to bowl first after winning the toss. They added an impressive 82-run stand for the opening wicket on a surface which was aiding pace and bounce. Fast bowler Navdeep Saini drew first blood for the hosts inducing an edge off Holden’s blade through to the wicket-keeper KS Bharat for 26.

However, Ben Duckett continued to bring his half-century off 91 deliveries as England Lions made it to the lunch interval on 92 for one. In his 80-run knock, the southpaw hammered 15 boundaries before Shardul Thakur rattled his timber. The Indian pacer tasted blood as India pacers pegged back with few consecutive wickets.

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Ollie Pope had his stumps left in a mess by medium-pacer Avesh Khan for eight before the tea interval while immediately after the break Saini got the big wicket of England Lions captain Sam Billings for 9 with the visitors slipping to 201 for 4. Sam Hain held one side tight brought up his half-century off 142 balls. However, Jalaj Saxena dismissed Hains soon for 61 runs giving Bharat his third catch.

Since then, Steven Mullaney and Will Jacks resisted well and scored odd boundaries to help England Lions cross the 300-run mark in the final over of the day. Mullaney was unbeaten on 39 runs with three fours to his name while Jacks smashed five fours enroute an unbeaten 72-ball 40.

Brief Scores:

England Lions 303/5 (Ben Duckett 80, Sam Hain 61, Will Jacks 40; Navdeep Saini 2/57) vs India A.