Nagpur: After posting a huge total, thanks to brilliant knocks from Sachin Tendulkar and Sanjay Bangar, India made crucial breakthroughs to tighten its grip on the first Test match on Sunday. Bangar, playing his second Test, became the third centurion of the innings before India declared its first innings at 570 for seven to take a 283 run lead over Zimbabwe's 287. Zimbabwe was 80 for two at tea in its second innings, still needing 203 runs to make India bat again. Skipper Stuart Carlisle (28) and Alistair Campbell (30), dismissed off the penultimate ball before tea, were back in the pavilion. Trevor Gripper was batting on 18.
Carlisle, the top-scorer of first innings, and Gripper put up 32 runs for the first wicket when left-arm seamer Zaheer Khan struck the first blow by trapping the Zimbabwe skipper leg before wicket. Leg spinner Anil Kumble then sent back Campbell, who was batting quite well, just before tea to raise India's chances of forcing an innings victory. Earlier, Bangar and Tendulkar displayed attacking batting when India resumed at its overnight score of 437 for five.
The duo added 171 runs for the sixth wicket before Tendulkar, who had completed his 28th hundred on Saturday, got out while for 176 while trying a reverse sweep. India lost Zaheer Khan (0) at the same score of 547 but Bangar continued his brilliant batting to notch up his maiden hundred. India declared as soon as the Railways all-rounder reached his century.