Bumrah also scored an unbeaten 55 off 57 balls to rescue the Indians
Australia A 108 (Saini 3-19, Shami 3-29) trail Indians 194 (Bumrah 55*) by 86 runs
Joe Burns‘ horror start to the season continued with a second-ball duck against the pink ball at the SCG to heap further doubt as to whether he can be selected for the opening Test in Adelaide.
It was another day that provided more problems than answers for the Australians – despite reducing the Indians to 123 for 9 – with allrounder Cameron Green forced out of the match with concussion after a blow to the head in his follow through. In one of the more unlikely storylines, his replacement Patrick Rowe made his first-class debut against the skill of Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami.
Facing his second ball from Bumrah, who had earlier top-scored with a maiden first-class fifty, Burns feathered an edge against a delivery just outside off stump to leave him with a tally of 61 runs in eight innings this season. It also made it consecutive ducks against the Indians in the space of four days after he dragged on without scoring in the second innings at Drummoyne Oval.
He is likely to get one more innings in this match but is now facing the prospect of needing one of the biggest shows of faith from the selectors if he is to play the day-night Test.
However, Burns wasn’t alone in his batting struggle as the India quicks made life very difficult under lights as Australia A were bundled out for 108 – losing all ten wickets in the last session. Marcus Harris, who now appears likely to feature in the first Test, shaped up nicely before edging to slip against Shami from around the wicket and in the same over Ben McDermott was given lbw offering no shot.
Nic Maddinson was brilliantly caught from a top-edged pull by Wriddhiman Saha, in the outfield for this game, as he ran back from square leg and held the chance over his shoulder. The fifth duck of the day was collected by Sean Abbott although he could do little about the pearler he received from Shami, who reinforced what a threat he’ll be in Adelaide during an 11-over spell broken by tea and a brief rain delay.
The day ended in strange circumstances with Harry Conway running himself out shortly after taking a blow on the helmet that appeared to anger and unsettle him. He was briefly checked on the field and did not look entirely comfortable as he walked off.
In the first half of the day it was the Indians who appeared to have more of the concerns as their batting line-up was dismantled by the Australia attack after a rollicking start that saw them race along at nearly eight an over in the first 10 overs.
Mayank Agarwal edged Abbott to slip in the third over but Prithvi Shaw flayed 40 off 29 balls with an array of thunderous boundaries before receiving a superb delivery from Will Sutherland which nipped back to bowl him.
Shubman Gill and Hanuma Vihari took the score to 102 for 2 with the first interval approach only for a collapse of 7 for 21 to derail the innings. The slide started when Vihari shouldered arms at Jack Wildermuth and saw his off stump clipped.
Gill was then removed by a terrific delivery from Green which climbed outside off to take the edge and Wildermuth, who was only added to the squad on Thursday after Moises Henriques’ hamstring injury, capped a fine morning by removing both Ajinkya Rahane and Rishabh Pant for single-digit scores. Five overs later and without adding to the total, Saha edged to third slip in a 22-ball stay.
However, just when a swift conclusion to the innings was on the cards the unlikely pairing of Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj flayed a last-wicket stand of 71 in 13.2 overs. It was a mixture of edges and authentic shots and rarely not entertaining.
Bumrah, who had a previous highest first-class score of 16, brought up his half-century with a top-edged pull that was parried over the boundary for six. When the stand finally ended, Bumrah was given a guard of honour into the dressing room although India will hope his batting is not needed to such an extent come next week.
Andrew McGlashan is a deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo