Chennai, Feb 18: Manoj Tiwary staked his claim for a maiden call-up to the Test squad with a timely century before Australia's spinners bowled out India A for 451 on the second day of the warm-up match here on Sunday (February 17).
In reply, the visitors, riding on Shane Watson's 84, reached 131 for four at stumps on a day when play started more than two hours from the scheduled time due to wet outfield. Matthew Wade (3) and Moises Henriques (0) were at the crease at the end of day's play.
Tiwary struck 129 off 187 balls, finding the fence 18 times and cleared it thrice. Tiwary is not in the 15-man squad selected for the first two Tests but this performance will remind the selectors that he is in form, having fully recovered from the injury he suffered in the middle of the Ranji season last December.
India A would have liked to score a few more runs considering that they were 338 for four at stumps on the opening day, and with Tiwary in good nick, that was definitely a possibility. However, after going wicket-less on the opening day, off-break bowler Nathan Lyon and promising 19-year-old left-arm spinner Ashton Agar grabbed five wickets between them to stop the India A team around the 450-mark at the Guru Nanak College Ground.
Barring Tiwary and, to an extent, Jalaj Saxena, the others could not make substantial contributions, though Rakesh Dhurv made a breezy 21 off 18 balls with the help of three sixes. Saxena, during his unbeaten knock of 30 off 106 balls, hit three fours, while CM Gautam, who was overnight unbeaten on 34, could add just four runs to his name.
The Karnataka wicket-keeper-batsman Gautam's 38 came off 68 balls and included six boundaries. Before his dismissal, Tiwary added 74 for the fifth wicket with Gautam, and another 76 for the sixth wicket with Saxena.