Ronchi leads New Zealand A with century

New Zealand  A have been dismissed for 310 in the first innings of their three day match against India A  in Visakhapatnam, with Luke Ronchi making 125 off 110 balls to top score for his side.

Todd Astle was the next best with 63. He also captured the wicket of Unmukt Chand (4) just before stumps to have India A six for one and still 304 runs behind.

After the opening day was lost to rain, the surface had dried sufficiently to allow play to begin and having won the toss New Zealand opted to bat first.

Three cheap wickets from Jalaj Saxena and a run-out saw New Zealand in a precarious position at 55 for four. That brought together the pair of Ronchi and Jimmy Neesham (27), who put on a timely 50 run partnership.

Astle joined Ronchi at the wicket with New Zealand at 106 for six. They added 146 for the seventh wicket to take their side through to 252, with Ronchi bringing up his century in the process.

The 32 year-old, who found the rope 16 times and hit four sixes, said it was pleasing to make a strong start to the tour and be able to contribute for his team.

“It was really good to make some runs from a personal point of view, but with the position we were in it was good to have a partnership there with Toddy,” Ronchi said.

“I think we’re in a fantastic position with 300 on the board and them one down overnight. Now we’ve just got to focus on bowling well on a flat wicket and take our opportunities.”

Mark Gillespie added the finishing touches with three late sixes to make an unbeaten 21 from 11 balls, before the innings came to a close after 77.3 overs.

India faced three overs before the end of the day, with captain Tom Latham’s decision to give Astle the new ball a success.
Play will resume at 9:30am local time tomorrow (4pm NZ time).

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