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Rishabh Pant smashes India’s own bowlers in exciting warm-up clash in Leicester

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Rishabh Pant scored an entertaining 76 for a combined Leicestershire XI against India’s attack, leaving the warm-up fixture evenly matched after the second day despite some fine bowling performances.

Pant takes on his own team

It was India versus India in the standout moment of the second day of the squad’s tour match against Leicestershire on Friday.

Rishabh Pant, lining up for a rejigged Leicestershire XI, went after India’s attack, scoring 76 from 87 balls in a knock that accelerated as it went on.

Pant particularly targeted the quicks, with Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj and Umesh Yadav all getting the treatment from India’s wicketkeeper-batter, whose innings helped his XI reach 244 all out.

Shami and Siraj light it up

The day’s play started with India having declared overnight on 246/8, and the new-ball attack immediately made inroads.

It was Shami who did the damage early on, having Sam Evans (1) caught by Virat Kohli before cleaning up Cheteshwar Pujara for a six-ball duck.

Siraj got in on the action, dismissing Louis Kimber for 31 and Joey Evison for 22 to leave Leicestershire 71/4.

Shami’s third wicket of the day, Rishi Patel (34), ensured he finished with figures of 3/42 from 12 overs, while Ravindra Jadeja came into the game through the second half of the innings.

It was Jadeja who brought Pant’s explosive 76 to a close, and the spinner picked up a further two wickets, having both Roman Walker and Nathan Bowley caught behind by keeper Srikar Bharat as the innings came to an end on 244.

Another tick for Bharat

Shubman Gill’s quickfire 38 from 34 balls stood out in the evening session as the Indian XI reached 80/1 at the close of play.

But it was Bharat who strengthened his claim for a first cap the most, adding to his unbeaten 70* in the first innings with a tidy 31 not out that he will look to build on when play resumes on Saturday.

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