Mumbai: England's bowlers got a taste of what may lie ahead in the Test series against India after they were made to toil hard for wickets in a practice match in Mumbai on Sunday.
The tourists struggled on the field as Mumbai 'A', replying to England's first innings score of 345-9, cruised to 232-4 by stumps on the second day of the three-day match at the DY Patil stadium.
Cheteshwar Pujara, one of the non-Mumbai players in the home side, warmed up for the four-Test series with a polished 87 on an even-paced wicket that offered no assistance to the bowlers.
Pujara, the current number three batsman in the Indian Test team, hit 11 boundaries as he put on 163 for the third wicket with Hiken Shah (84 not out) after Mumbai 'A' had slipped to 47-2.
The tourists, who started the day on 338-6, lost three wickets for seven runs before stand-in captain Stuart Broad declared 30 minutes after the start.
Broad, a leading contender for the first Test which starts in Ahmedabad on November 15, suffered a heel injury in the field and will undergo scans later on Sunday.
Fast bowler Steven Finn is already being treated for a thigh strain he picked up in the tour opener last week, forcing England to call up Surrey paceman Stuart Meaker as a precautionary cover.
The tourists rested skipper Alastair Cook and star batsman Kevin Pietersen for the match against a makeshift team comprising players not selected for the ongoing Ranji Trophy first-class matches.
England 1st innings: 345-9 declared (Jonny Bairstow 118, Eoin Morgan 76, Samit Patel 60, Kshemal Waingankar 3-72, Shardul Thakur 3-53).
Mumbai 'A' 1st innings: 232-4 (Cheteshwar Pujara 87, Hiken Shah 84 not out, James Anderson 1-36, Graham Onions 1-34, Monty Panesar 1-47).