Ramprakash puts England A on top

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CRICKET India A 300 and 83-7

England A 289

A masterful innings of 99 by vice-captain Mark Ramprakash and some class seam bowling by Glen Chapple and Dominic Cork put England A in command in the first "Test" against India A in Bangalore yesterday.

Ramprakash, hungry to press his claims for a senior recall, guided England A to 289 - just 11 runs behind.

Glen Chapple, the Lancashire pace bowler, also played a key role with both bat and ball as India A finished the third day on 83 for 7 - a lead of only 94.

Chapple took 3 for 21 with a mature new-ball burst and, with Dominic Cork defying a thigh strain to pick up 2 for 31 at the other end, India A's top order was blown away.

Amol Muzumdar, India's exciting 20-year-old batting discovery, was the only player to survive the onslaught with 48 not out, but late wickets from both Paul Weekes and Richard Stemp kept England A right on top.

INDIA A - First Innings 300 ( V Rathore 90, R S Dravid 60; R D Stemp 6-83)

ENGLAND A - First Innings (Overnight: 153-3)

M R Ramprakash c Yadav b Chauhan 99

*A P Wells c Muzumdar b Chatterjee 20

P N Weekes lbw b Bahutule 3

D G Cork c & b Bahutule 6

P A Nixon c Sub b Bahutule 0

G Chapple c Chatterjee b Mhambrey 26

I D K Salisbury c Muzumdar b Mhambrey 5

R D Stemp not out 2

Extras (b8 nb11) 19

Total (112.3 overs) 289

Fall: 1-2 2-97 3-136 4-191 5-207 6-213

7-213 8-265 9-283

Bowling: Mhambrey 14.3-3-42-3; Kuruvilla 7-0-23-0; Chauhan 28-7-67-1; Chatterjee 26-6-53-2; Bahutule 37-10-96-4.

INDIA A - Second Innings J Singh c Ramprakash b Chapple 5

V Rathore c Nixon b Chapple 10

A Muzumdar not out 48

*P Amre c Cork b Chapple 12

R Dravid b Cork 1

S Bahutule c Salisbury b Cork 1

V Yadav c Salisbury b Weekes 5

U Chatterjee c Ramprakash b Stemp 0

R Chauhan not out 0

Extras (lb1) 1

Total (for 7, 39 overs) 83

Fall: 1-7 2-21 3-43 4-44 5-46 6-77 7-80.

To Bat: P Mhambrey, A Kuruvilla.

Bowling: Cork 11-3-31-2; Chapple 11-2- 21-3; Stemp 9-2-12-1; Salisbury 5-2-16-0; Weekes 3-1-2-1.

Shane Warne, Damien Fleming and Merv Hughes will all be missing from the Victoria team to play England on Friday in the last match for the tourists before the final two back-to-back Tests.

n Indian fast bowler Javagal Srinath and leg spinner Anil Kumble have signed to play English county cricket this year. Srinath will replace Courtney Walsh at Gloucestershire and Kumble takes over from Curtly Ambrose at Northamptonshire.