Stuart Binny and Cheteshwar Pujara scored fluent half-centuries as the Indians ended the second day of the tour game against Derbyshire at 341 for six, enjoying a useful day of batting practice before the first Test at Nottingham on July 9.
Binny (81 batting, 111b, 9x4, 2x6) and Ajinkya Rahane (13 batting, 40b) were together at close and have so added 53 runs for the seventh wicket.
Pujara (81 retired out) too had scored a fifty earlier in the day with 13 hits to the fence, his second in as many innings on this tour so far.
Ravindra Jadeja was the only casualty in the final session. His 45 came off 67 balls and included seven hits to the fence and one over it.
Earlier, Pujara and Dhoni added 119 runs for the fourth wicket as the Indian skipper made good use of the placid batting conditions to scored 46 (56b, 4x4, 1x6).
At the other end, Pujara calmly accumulated runs and after Dhoni’s dismissal in the 55th over, he too walked off, just 19 short of a century. This was after he and Virat Kohli (36) added 63 runs for the third wicket.
India made slow progress in the morning session in reply to Derbyshire’s first innings score of 326 for nine as Shikhar Dhawan (six) and Murali Vijay (six) were dismissed cheaply.
Vijay was out leg before to Mark Turner with the Indians’ score at 18. Four balls later, Ben Cotton had Dhawan caught behind.
The scores: Derbyshire 326 for five decl. in 90 overs vs. Indians 341 for six in 91 overs (C. Pujara (retd. out) 81, M.S. Dhoni 46, R. Jadeja 45, S. Binny 81 batting).