Sehwag~~s ton keeps India in 2nd Test, 210/4 on Day 1

Published: Friday, August 9, 2002, 5:15 [IST]
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Nottingham: Virender Sehwag's Test-best 106 gave India a foothold in the second Test against England here at Trent Bridge on Thursday. When bad light forced the players off at 16:00 GMT, India were 210 for four after winning the toss with Sachin Tendulkar already out for 34 - his third low score of the series. India captain Sourav Ganguly was 29 not out off 68 balls including four fours and Venkatsai Laxman 22 not out from just 27 balls with four boundaries. Matthew Hoggard was the pick of the England attack, the Yorkshire seamer bowling nearly a third of his side's 66 overs for fine figures of 21-6-54-2. Meanwhile, recalled medium-pacer Dominic Cork was off the field before stumps for a precautionary x-ray on his right knee, which he injured while fielding. Opening batsman Sehwag, 85 at tea, then drove England debutant quick Steve Harmison for a superb boundary through extra-cover for four and next ball cut him over point to go into the 90s. But he was almost out to the stroke that took him to his second Test century. Driving loosely against Harmison, Sehwag saw a leaping Michael Vaughan at cover-point just get his left hand to the ball before it sped to the boundary. Sehwag's first hundred against England, in his seventh Test overall, came from 164 balls including 17 fours. But when he had added another boundary, in surpassing the debut 105 he made against South Africa at Bloemfontein in 2001-02, he was out. Craig White's first two overs had cost 19 runs but the third ball of his comeback spell saw Sehwag's middle stump knocked over as the creasebound batsman played inside the line. Together with Ganguly he had shared a stand of 71 in 125 balls with India then standing at 179 for four. It was a particularly valuable innings after Tendulkar had been dismissed. Just when it seemed as if he was about to atone for scores of 16 and 12 in the 170-run series opening defeat at Lord's, Tendulkar again went cheaply albeit this time for a 68-ball innings including six boundaries. Trying to pull a short delivery well outside off-stump from Cork, Tendulkar got a bottom edge on to his stumps. He had helped Sehwag put on 74 in 131 balls, the pair making England's decision to drop left arm-spinner Ashley Giles, in favour of an all right-arm seam attack, look risky. Tendulkar, who started the match level with legendary all-rounder Gary Sobers' mark of 8,032 runs, had the minor consolation of taking sole possession of ninth place in the all-time list of Test run-scorers. Earlier Ganguly, despite a green-tinged pitch, took the bold decision to bat first. However, India lost their first wicket for just six when Wasim Jaffer was bowled by Hoggard for an eight-ball duck, an inside edge going through a huge gap between bat and pad. Durham paceman Harmison began with four successive maidens after coming in for fellow fast bowler Simon Jones, who won his first Test cap at Lord's but subsequently suffered a side strain. The statistics, however, belied Harmison's lack of accuracy. Hoggard though made the batsmen play throughout and dismissed Rahul Dravid (13) when he drove at an outswinger without moving his feet. England's other debutant, Kent batsman Robert Key, did the rest with a diving first slip catch. Key was playing in place of Graham Thorpe, who announced after the first Test that he was taking an indefinite break from all cricket due to personal reasons.

Scorecard of Test 2 Day 1
Sehwag steadies India innings, 141 for 3 at tea
Patel becomes youngest keeper ever to play in a Test

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