Tendulkar Thrills As India Dominate
Sachin Tendulkar scored 38 unbeaten runs and will begin day two of the second Test between India and the West Indies in Mumbai at the crease after India utterly dominated the opening day.
Playing his 200th and final Test, Tendulkar received a guard of honour before embarking on a typically fluent innings to guide India to stumps on 157 for two.
They had earlier dismissed the West Indies for just 182, Pragyan Ojha taking five for 50, Ravichandran Ashwin three for 45 and Bhuvneshwar Kumar snapping up his maiden Test wicket.
Kieran Powell top scored with 48 in a dismal batting display by the tourists which did them no credit at all, although it did allow the Mumbai fans to see Tendulkar bat earlier than they might have imagined.
Earlier in the morning, the stage was set perfectly for Tendulkar’s 200th Test: he was presented with a special cap by Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni and felicitated by the BCCI officials as well as administrators from the Mumbai Cricket Association.
The buzz around the ground was electric as there were long queues of fans wanting to get in, just to get a glimpse of their hero in his farewell match.
There was also a Test match to play. India won the toss and asked the West Indies to bat first on a pitch that looked a little lively and definitely had more bounce than the strip at Eden Gardens.
The Indian team was unchanged from the previous Test while medium pacer Shannon Gabriel came in for Sheldon Cottrell. Tendulkar then led out the Indian team onto the field, allowing for the proceedings to begin.
The West Indies were off to a brisk start but once again their openers Chris Gayle and Powell couldn’t get far. Gayle was the first to go, edging one off Mohammad Shami to gully, after making 11 runs.
As in the first Test, Darren Bravo put on a sedate partnership with Powell, this time worth 61 runs as they went about rebuilding after the early loss.
Powell fought his way through to 48 runs, hitting four fours and one six, while Bravo moved on to 29 in the meantime. The latter was the first to fall, walking to an edge off Ashwin that Dhoni held.
The West Indies went to lunch at 93 for two but soon after the break, Ojha scalped his first wicket off the day, having Powell caught at forward short leg.
There was still no need to panic for them, as Marlon Samuels and Shivnarine Chanderpaul now undertook the repair work. The latter, playing in his 150th Test, started off with a six and looked to score quickly. His partnership with Samuels - worth 43 runs in all - evolved soon, but those watching lost count of the number of times the right-hander was beaten by Shami outside his off-stump.
Ojha got an edge off him soon, dismissing Samuels for 19 and that ushered the collapse. Eight runs later Bhuvneshwar struck to remove Chanderpaul (25) and then Ashwin and Ojha spun a web around the rest of the batsmen.
From 140 for four they lost six wickets for just 42 more runs, bowled out for 182, a far cry from the calls of improving their form in the first Test.
Ojha finished with five for 40, while Ashwin took three for 45, crossing the 100 wickets mark in his career. Shami (1-36) and Kumar (1-45) took one apiece.
The Indian batting started after tea, with everyone keen on watching Tendulkar bat. Oblivious to the demands of the fans, Murali Vijay (43) and Shikhar Dhawan (33) silently racked up the runs.
They added 77 in just 13 overs, when two quick wickets fell. Both the batsmen were out within two deliveries off each other, leaving India at 77 for two when he walked out to bat.
The West Indies, led by Sammy, lined up to give him a guard of honour. Then he started batting and played some exquisite strokes all around the park. The cover drive came out, as did the punch, the cut off the back foot and the cheeky deft to fine leg.
Select quotes from the day
Pragyan Ojha: "I want to dedicate this five-wicket haul to Sachin Tendulkar. I am glad to take this haul in his 200th Test and it will go down in history.
"I am happy for Ashwin, our partnership is growing really well and our plans are executed well. The pitch had a lot more bounce in it.
"I don’t mind being overshadowed because this match is for Sachin. He should enjoy himself and get as many runs as possible, that’s what the entire team wants. We were all sitting at one place and on one moved while he was at the crease.”
There was no West Indies press conference.
© Cricket World 2013