Manish Pandey will hope that India A put up a better show against South Africa A © Getty Images
Manish Pandey will hope that India A put up a better show against South Africa A © Getty Images

An embarrassing 8-wicket loss in their very first outing of a quadrangular series at the hands of the home side, Australia A, has kicked off the campaign on a dreadful note for India A. But not just the result and the margin of it has but it was the manner in which the defeat came by, that was most embarrassing, reminding them and giving them a teaser of what task lies ahead of them on the tour. An awful batting display, that could not even survive 16 overs, from a team that bats deep, now will have to pull up their socks, forget what has happened, and start from scratch in the next match against South Africa A. READ: India A bowled out for 55 against Australia A

The Manish Pandey-led India A, had perhaps did know know that sort of challenge they had ahead of them before coming face-to-face with the bowling pair of Chris Tremain and Daniel Worrall. The Aussie duo left the Indian batting line-up in shambles. They shared 9 wickets between them, bowled India A out for just 55. The runs were never going to be enough.

India A will now be up against the South African side, who also lost their first fixture against Cricket Australia’s National Performance Squad (NPS), by 17 runs. After restricting NPS to 243/8, an average batting performance – despite a 78-run knock by Qaasim Adams – was not enough to hand South Africa A their first win. Wayne Parnell did not feature in that match and Heino Kuhn captained the side. It remains to be seen if Parnell features in the next game. READ: Ojha dropped; Manish Pandey to lead India A

Both teams therefore, go into their second fixture of the series, in search of their first win. India A will have to dig deep and forget about their huge loss against Australia A and focus on their task.

India’s young guns, Karun Nair, Mandeep Singh, Kedar Jadhav, Akshar Patel and Manish Pandey, were all part of the India squad that toured Zimbabwe in the recent series. The 3-0 whitewash of the Zimbabweans in the ODI series then, did include good batting displays from Nair apart from KL Rahul who is part of the Test squad in the Caribbean, while the T20 series saw fine performances from Mandeep Singh, Jadhav and Akshar as well. It almost looked as if that tour didn’t help them improve, which is surely not the case. Yuzvendra Chahal, the leg-spinner did manage to get Marcus Stoinis bowled and Akshar did pick a wicket, but not enough runs to defend meant Australia A cruised to a victory. READ: South Africa name strong ‘A’ squad

With still a lot to play for in the quadrangular series, both India A and South Africa A will, therefore, look to bounce back from defeat and learn from their mistakes in their previous matches. They need some points on the table, else it will not be long until they find themselves playing for the third and fourth spots in the competition.

Squads

India A: Manish Pandey (c), Yuzvendra Chahal, Faiz Fazal, Mandeep Singh, Shreyas Iyer, Karun Nair, Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Akshar Patel, Jayant Yadav, Dhawal Kulkarni, Jaydev Unadkat, Barinder Sran, Sanju Samson

South Africa A: Wayne Parnell (c), Qaasim Adams, Marchant de Lange, Reeza Hendricks, Heino Kuhn, Eddie Leie, Sisanda Magala, David Miller, Aaron Phangiso, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Rilee Rossouw, Malusi Siboto, Dane Vilas, Khaya Zondo, Theunis de Bruyn, Dane Paterson

Time: 9:30 AM Local, 11:30 PM GMT

(Karan Dewan, a reporter with CricketCountry, loves following and playing sports. He is a Team India fan and loves winning. Follow him on his twitter handle @karan13dewan