Finn concern as England toil
Steven Finn gave England significant cause for concern as he limped out of the attack with a thigh injury on the first day of their India tour.
Finn, a key component in England's likely Test line-up, exited proceedings in the morning and is expected to have a scan to identify the source of discomfort in his right leg.
The 6ft 7in seamer aborted the second over of his second spell - a setback which overshadowed Kevin Pietersen's return to the team, though hardly in the way England would have wished.
Alastair Cook's initial experience on his first tour as permanent Test captain turned out to be an awkward one all round as seventh-wicket pair Manoj Tiwary (93) and Irfan Pathan augmented the gains of Abhinav Mukund (73) and Yuvraj Singh (59) in India A's 369 for nine in this three-day match at the Brabourne Stadium.
Mukund was the dominant, but not always convincing, force throughout the morning session, making 41 of the first 50 runs and numbering 12 fours in his 57-ball half-century after the hosts won the toss.
Yuvraj provided the impetus either side of lunch and then, after England had chipped away to the tune of 190 for six, Tiwary and Pathan shut the door again in a century stand.
The majority of Mukund's early boundaries came off the edge on a pitch of decent pace, but the left-handed opener grew in confidence as England's troubles gathered.
Tim Bresnan (three for 59) had a hand in the first two wickets.
First, replacing Finn after his three overs with the new ball, he was alert, agile and accurate enough - with an under-armed direct-hit - to run out Murali Vijay after Mukund called his partner through for a sharp single dropped into the leg-side.
As James Anderson took a breather and then Finn went off, Bresnan was rewarded for his efforts again when he found alarming extra bounce from barely short of a length to have Ajinkya Rahane edging a simple catch off the shoulder of the bat to gully.
Pietersen, back in an England team for the first time since his summer of discontent and subsequent 'reintegration', did the necessary with a simple catch.
It took another seven minutes, however, for Rahane's dismissal to be confirmed as the umpires - in accordance with new International Cricket Council protocol - ordered what proved to be a laborious check to rule out a no-ball.
Once under way again at last, Bresnan would have had two wickets in two balls had Samit Patel managed to hold on to a sharp, low catch at midwicket.
Instead, Yuvraj escaped the indignity of a golden duck as he continues his comeback following his recovery from lung cancer - and he went on to punish Patel with two fours and a six over long-on when the all-rounder came on for his first over of left-arm spin.
On the stroke of lunch, England at last had something to smile about when Mukund fell to a smart catch at short-leg by Ian Bell off Graeme Swann (three for 90) to end a near run-a-ball stand of 56.
Yuvraj stayed on the attack, milking the spinners in particular as he hit seven fours in his 50 and brought up the milestone with his third six - straight off Swann.
By then, captain Suresh Raina was gone to another Bell catch at short-leg - this time off Patel - and Yuvraj was stumped off Swann as he went in search of a fifth maximum.
Anderson returned to deceive Wriddiman Saha with reverse-swing, playing no shot lbw.
But Tiwary, watchful at first, and Pathan had plenty of power to add in 110-run partnership.
Swann eventually had the left-hander lbw pushing forward, and Bresnan yorked Tiwary to end his 150-ball stay.
The Yorkshireman doubled up by bowling number 10 Ashok Dinda first ball as England stuck to their task on a boundary-laden day which did much to reinforce the truism that this tour is sure to be hard work for them.