VADODARA: Mayank Agarwal served a timely reminder to the selectors with a brisk 90 while Ankit Bawne hit a patient hundred as Board President’s XI scored 360 for six before declaring against the West Indies in the warm-up game here Saturday.
In the national reckoning since last season, opener Agarwal played his natural attacking game, hitting 14 boundaries and two sixes, but his younger Prithvi Shaw (8) was removed quickly after hitting two boundaries in the two-day game.
Karun Nair (29), whose confidence took a beating after being benched during the entire the England Test series, missed a golden opportunity to play a big knock on a flat track where BP XI players maintained a run-rate of four per over.
Shreyas Iyer (61 off 64 balls) was in the T20 mode, hitting five sixes, and he was especially severe on veteran spinner Devendra Bishoo (3/104 in 21 overs), who had the last laugh when a century looked like there for the taking. During the second part of the innings, Maharashtra batsman Bawne showed why he is such a consistent performer in domestic cricket with an unbeaten 116 off 195 balls with 15 boundaries. Bawne’s hundred came off 153 balls.
The match was like a last trial for the Shaw-Agarwal pair, which have been prolific at the domestic and A level matches.
Shaw is likely to retain his place in the squad for the Tests but it is not clear if Agarwal can make it, with the team management more inclined to pick Shikhar Dhawan for his prolific record on flat decks.
Shaw was quickly snuffed out by opposition pacer Shanon Gabriel, caught by Shimron Hetmyer, but Agarwal didn’t let the tempo drop and hit the pacers on the up. He hit some lovely drives on both sides of the wicket.