Thursday 6 November 2008 

40th Test Century For Tendulkar In Nagpur


India
311-5 (Tendulkar 109, Sehwag 66, Laxman 64, Krejza 3-138) v Australia

Airtel Border-Gavaskar Trophy, fourth Test, day one, Nagpur

India closed day one of the fourth and final Test against Australia in Nagpur on 311 for five thanks to Sachin Tendulkar's 40th Test century and half-centuries from Virender Sehwag and VVS Laxman.

Leading the series 1-0 courtesy of a 320-run in Mohali, India again won the toss and chose to bat with Sehwag launching a blistering assault on the Australian bowlers.

He hit nine fours and a six, dominating an opening stand of 98 with debutant Murali Vijay Krishna, who was the first man to fall for 33.

He was caught by wicket-keeper Brad Haddin off of Shane Watson shortly before Rahul Dravid's poor series continued when he was caught by Simon Katich off of debutant off-spinner Jason Krejza for a two-ball duck.

Krejza, whose first two balls in Test cricket went for four and six from Sehwag, struck again shortly before lunch when he bowled Sehwag for 66 to leave India 116 for three.

Tendulkar, who passed 12,000 Test runs in Mohali, and VVS Laxman, who is making his 100th Test start, then batted patiently for more than a session, adding 146 runs for the fourth wicket to get India out of trouble.

The partnership was broken when Laxman (64) edged a turning delivery from Krejza with Haddin taking a smart catch.

Krejza had Tendulkar dropped on 85 by Mitchell Johnson and 98 by Brett Lee before India's leading batsman reached his 40th Test century, also his 10th against Australia and fourth in Nagpur.

Johnson returned with the new ball to remove Tendulkar lbw before Saurav Ganguly, playing his final Test, and Mahendra Singh Dhoni survived until stumps unbeaten on 27 and four not out respectively.

Tendulkar faced 188 balls and hit 12 fours.

"Today I can also thank God," Tendulkar said afterwards, with reference to the two dropped catches and a missed run out.

 

"I think after Adelaide, I have played around six or seven matches. I know I am batting well, but I was not getting to the three-figure mark."

Vijay Krishna replaced the banned Gautam Gambhir for India with Harbhajan Singh returning in place of the retired Anil Kumble while Australia named two spinners in Krejza and Cameron White with Stuart Clark missing out.

Umpire Billy Bowden stands in his 50th Test match.

The other two Tests in Bangalore and New Delhi were drawn.

© Cricket World 2008