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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Tendulkar, Dravid tons give India big lead

Tendulkar, Dravid tons give India big lead

Last updated on: January 25, 2010 16:43 IST

- Scorecard: Bangladesh vs India, 2nd Test

Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul DravidSachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid hit centuries to help India build a huge lead against Bangladesh on day two of the second and final Test against Bangladesh at the Shere Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur, Dhaka on Monday.

Harbhajan Singh fell off the last delivery of the day as India closed the second day on a comfortable 459 for five in 102.5 overs to stretch their lead to 226 runs in reply to Bangladesh's first innings score of 233.

At stumps, captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was unbeaten on 22 from 38 deliveries, having hit two boundaries.

Earlier, Virender Sehwag hit a brisk 56 from 63 deliveries, adding 103 runs for the opening wicket with Gautam Gambhir to give India a good start.

Gambhir played a solid innings of 68 from 83 deliveries, having hit nine boundaries, before he was caught behind by wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim trying to fend a short delivery fromf Shafiul Islam.

The Delhi left-hander registered his 11th half-century in 11 consecutive Tests to equal the record for fifties in most consecutive Tests set by West Indies batting great Viv Richards way back in 1976-77.

Dravid made a solid 111 from 188 deliveries, inclusive of 11 boundaries, before he was forced to retire after getting hit on his helmet by a bouncer from Shahadat Hossain in the 82nd over.

Tendulkar, dropped twice, scored a fluent 143 from 182 deliveries, inclusive of 13 boundaries and a six, before hitting Shakib Al Hasan straight to the midwicket fielder. Murali Vijay eased himself to 30 from 49 deliveries before he hit Shakib straight to the mid-on fielder.

Dravid and Tendulkar were involved in an unbroken stand of 222 runs for the third wicket before the former had to withdraw with injury. It was the 17th century partnership between the two champion batsmen setting a new world record for the most century partnerships in Test cricket. They went past West Indian openers Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes and Australians Mathew Hayden and Justin Langers, who shared 16 century partnerships each.

On day one, M Mahmudullah was left stranded on a superb innings of 96 from 156 deliveries, laced with 13 boundaries to take Bangladesh to a respectable 233 after they were struggling at 51 for five at one stage.

Pacers Ishant Sharma and Zaheer Khan were both outstanding with the ball as they claimed four for 66 and three for 60 respectively. Left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha also made a useful contribution with the ball as he took two for 45 in 14 overs, while Harbhajan Singh took one for 46.

India lead the two-match series 1-0 after their 113-run victory in the first Test in Chittagong.

Morning session: (108 runs, 25 overs, 2 wickets)

Resuming on 69 for no loss in 13 overs, the Indian openers continued milking the bowling with ease.

Sehwag took no time to complete his half-century, which he brought up in some style with a cracking boundary through covers off Shahadat Hossain. The right-hander took just 51 deliveries to reach the landmark, having hit seven boundaries, and was looking intent on playing a big innings.

Gambhir got his first boundary of the day when flicked a full delivery from Shafiul Islam through the midwicket in the 17th over. In the very next over, Gambhir hit Shahadat for back to back boundaries to move to 43 and take India to 96 for no loss after 18 overs.

Sehwag thumped a full delivery from Shahadat straight down the ground for a boundary to bring up the 100-run partnership, the seventh time the Delhi duo had managed the feat.

But Hossain had his revenge the next delivery when Shahadat got Sehwag to glove a short delivery straight to wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim. Sehwag made a brisk 56 from 63 deliveries, inclusive of eight boundaries, having added 103 runs for the opening wicket with his Delhi team-mate Gambhir. (103-1, 20)

In the next over, Gambhir hit Shafiul Islam for two successive boundaries to bring up his half-century off 60 deliveries. The Delhi left-hander has now hit half-centuries in 11 consecutive Tests to equal the record set by West Indies batting great Viv Richards way back in 1976-77.

Rahul Dravid took time to get his eye in before he drove a full delivery from Rubel Hossain through the covers for his first boundary as India reached 124 for one after 25 overs.

The former India captain (9) survived a close shout for run out when Gambhir hit one straight back which went back on to the stumps. The bowler Shafiul appealed claiming that the ball had brushed his little finger of the left hand before it went on to the stumps but the replays were inconclusive and Dravid survived.

And Dravid made sure Bangladesh felt the pinch when he stepped out and lofted Mahmudullah over mid-off for a boundary in the next over.

Just when it looked Gambhir was set for a world record sixth century in as many Tests, Bangladesh struck against the run of play.

Gambhir was done in by a well directed short delivery from Shafiul Islam which he fended off to lob a simple catch to wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim. The left-hander continued his golden run with the bat as he made 68 from 83 deliveries, having hit nine boundaries. (146-2, 29.5)

Meanwhile, Dravid seemed to have got the measure of the wicket and was now looking to play a few shots. He hit Shakib Al Hasan for boundaries in consecutive overs, through the covers and midwicket, to move to 28 and take the total to 160 for two after 33 overs.

Dravid (28) got another lifeline when he was caught at the wide first slip trying to fend a short delivery from Rubel Hossain in the 34th over.

At lunch on the second day, India reached 177 for two in 38 overs and now trail Bangladesh by 56 runs. Dravid was unbeaten on 33 from 57 deliveries, laced with five boundaries, and Sachin Tendulkar played out time for 13 from 28 deliveries.

Once again, India emerged with the honours from the session as they scored more than 100 runs. But Bangladesh kept themselves in the hunt as they managed to take two wickets and troubled the Indian batsmen a few times with well directed short deliveries.

With the series against South Africa coming up, it must be worrying for India that their top three batsmen have struggled against the short deliveries and that too from Bangladesh's medium pacers. Both Sehwag and Gambhir were caught trying to fend short deliveries from pacers, while Dravid survived the same fate only because Rubel Hossain had over the stepped the bowling crease.

Post lunch session: (31 overs, 124 runs, 0 wickets)

Dravid got the first boundary of the session when he flicked a full delivery from Rubel through midwicket to take India to 185 for two after 40 overs.

Tendulkar's first boundary of the innings took some time coming. He swept Shakib through fine leg for a boundary, his first off the 41st delivery he faced in the 43rd over of the innings. That four also saw Tendulkar goes past 22000 runs in first class cricket becoming only the second Indian to do so after Sunil Gavaskar.

Tendulkar survived a nervy moment when an inside edge off Rubel just missed the stumps and went past the wicketkeeper for a boundary. The Bangladesh fielding let them down when Raqibul Hasan at gully dropped an uppish drive from Tendulkar (27) off Rubel in the 44th over.

In the next over from Shakib, Tendulkar nearly played on to his stumps as he tried to sweep but the ball deflected off his gloves and just went past the stumps.

Dravid completed his half-century off 81 deliveries in vintage fashion when he drove straight back past the bowler Rubel for a boundary, in the 46th over.

It was strange to see Shakib resort to a defensive tactics early on in his spell as he bowled from over the wickets allowing both batsmen the liberty to use the pads at will.

The two veteran batsmen were beginning to take charge and Bangladesh could only hope and pray. Dravid continued finding the midwicket boundary with ease every time the bowlers drifted on his pads as he did to Shahadat in the 50th over for his eighth boundary to move to 59.

Tendulkar completed his half-century, his 55th in Tests, with a cracking boundary through the covers off Shahadat in the 58th over. That boundary also brought up the 100-run partnership from 169 deliveries for the third wicket between Tendulkar and Dravid. It was the 17th century partnership between the two champion batsmen to set a new world record for the most century partnerships in Test cricket going past West Indian openers Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes and Australians Mathew Hayden and Justin Langers, who shared 16 century partnerships each.

Tendulkar, on 53, enjoyed another dropped chance when he tried the upper cut against Shahadat which lobbed towards the point region but Raqibul Hasan failed to hold on diving forward, in the 58th over of the innings.

Bangladesh were successful in drying up the boundaries as just a single boundary came in the space of ten overs with India reaching 256 for two after 60 overs.

Tendulkar then decided to shift gears as he broke the shackles with back to back swept boundaries off Mohammad Ashraful in the 66th over. He then repeated the dose when he hit Mahmudullah for successive boundaries through square to close in on his century.

Lady luck continued to smile on Dravid as the veteran batsman enjoyed another close shave. In the 69th over, Dravid was sent back by Tendulkar as Tamim Iqbal scored a direct hit from mid-off but the third umpire gave the Indian batsmen benefit of the doubt.

At tea on the second day, India reached 301 for two in 69 overs to stretch their lead to 68 runs.

Tendulkar changed gears against the spinners to reach 89 from 119 deliveries, and Dravid was not out on 79 from 154 deliveries. Both batsmen hit nine boundaries each and were involved in an unbroken stand of 155 runs for the third wicket to stretch India's advantage.

Post tea session: (158 runs, 33.5 overs, 3 wickets)

Tendulkar scored the first boundary after the tea break when he flicked a full delivery from pacer Rubel through midwicket to advance to 97.

A few overs later, the master batsman completed his century, his 45th in Tests, with a single on the leg side off Shakib in the 73rd over. Tendulkar, who completed his century from 134 deliveries with the help of nine boundaries, registered his second successive century in the series and fourth in as many matches against Bangladesh.

Soon it was Dravid's turn to go past the three-figure mark. He brought up his century with a stylish boundary through the covers off Shakib, in the 77th over. This was Dravid's 29th century in Test cricket and it took him 178 deliveries to reach the landmark and was laced with 11 boundaries.

The duo also brought up their 200-run partnership in 290 deliveries for the third wicket in the 78th over.

Bangladesh could not pick up a wicket but they did manage to send back Dravid, in the 82nd over of the innings. The former India was forced to retire hurt when he was struck on the helmet by a bouncer from Shahadat after a solid knock of 111 from 188 deliveries, inclusive of 12 boundaries.

Murali Vijay benefited from Dravid's withdrawal as he got an opportunity to feast on this flat wicket. He started off by hitting a delightful boundary, driving a full delivery from Shafiul through the cover region in the 85th over of the innings.

Vijay had no real problems in milking the bowlers around as the pitch played nice and easy. He played the late cut against Shakib for a boundary through third man to take India past 400-run mark in the 90th over.

Tendulkar seemed bored by the proceedings as he danced down the wicket and lofted Shakib straight down the ground for the first six of the match. He repeated the shot off the next delivery but could not get the distance and it bounced a few times before rolling over for a boundary.

But Shakib had his revenge off the very next delivery when Tendulkar flicked one straight to Imrul Kayes at midwicket. The veteran batsman was in complete control during his masterly innings of 143, that included 13 boundaries and a six in 182 deliveries. (421-3, 91.4)

Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni came into bat ahead of Yuvraj Singh and showed his intentions early on. He charged down the wicket to Shakib and lofted one straight down the ground for a boundary and followed it up with another powerful boundary through the covers as India advanced to 432 for three in 94 overs to stretch their lead past the 200-run mark.

Murali perished in the hunt for quick runs when he charged down the wicket and lofted it straight to Mahmudullah at mid-on off Shakib in the 96th over after scoring 30 from 49 deliveries. (436-4, 95.5)

Surprisingly, Harbhajan Singh also came ahead of Yuvraj Singh, who was seen wearing his pads and do some stretching inside the dressing room.

It seemed Harbhajan would go on an all out attack but he chose to play with caution and so did Dhoni as they looked to bat out time. He fell in the final over the day when he edged behind the wicket of Shafiul and was taken by wicketkeeper Mushfiqur for 13. (459-5, 102.5)

India closed the second day on a comfortable 459 for five in 102.5 for a lead of 226 runs with five wickets still in hand.

They would no doubt be looking to score some quick runs in the morning session on day three and build a huge lead before asking Bangladesh to bat again.