Sachin Tendulkar fell short of his 100th international hundred but VVS Laxman closed on 61 not out to steer India to a five-wicket win over the West Indies in the opening Test in Delhi.
Tendulkar was trapped in front for 76 by leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo but he had done enough, along with Laxman, to put his side in position to take their first win in six matches, eventually closing on 276 for five in their second innings.
Rahul Dravid was the other man to fall on the final morning when he was bowled by Fidel Edwards when a late swinging delivery splattered his stumps.
Tendulkar was majestic at the other end, however, stroking ten fours during his 62nd Test half-century with some outstanding drives through the off side and wristy flicks.
He and Laxman had put on 71 for the fourth wicket when the crowd was silenced for the second time when Tendulkar, appearing to be looking to up the scoring rate, missed a short ball from Bishoo and was struck in front.
The umpire's raised finger singled that the world will have to wait for Tendulkar to get to Kolkata - the venue for the next Test - for his next chance to break his own record for international centuries.
Laxman, unperturbed, and fully living up to his tag as India's man for a crisis - although this run chase never quite got to crisis proportions - played with class and grace as he closed on 61 in 105 balls.
Laxman reached his 55th half-century and 11th against the West indies but Yuvraj Singh was unable to stay with him to close out the game as he was bowled by Darren Sammy with the scores level, the left-hander having looked assured in making 18 in 40 balls.
The winning runs were scored by Laxman to seal a 16th win under the captaincy of Mahendra Singh Dhoni with almost five sessions to spare.
The West Indies dominated the first two days of the match, Shivnarine Chanderpaul scoring a century as they hit 304 before bowling India out for 209 in reply.
However, India hit back on day three to dismiss the tourists for 180 as debutant Ravichandran Ashwin, later named as the man of the match, took six for 47 to set themselves 276 to win.
The second Test begins on 14th November.
© Cricket World 2011
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