Virender Sehwag flirts with records down lane

Published: Sunday, June 11, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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St Lucia:Virender Sehwag's magnificent knock of 180 was not just a tale of all hits and the dashing opener, who silenced critics by blazing all guns on the day one of the second Test yesterday lamented the misses in retrospection.

The butcher from Delhi missed another double ton when he was cruising for one but his thorn in the flesh was that he fell just a run short of becoming the first Indian to complete a century before lunch.

''I knew that if I scored hundred runs before lunch, no Indian had done that before. I was unlucky to miss it for one run. On that run Wasim gave a call for double because there was overthrow, but I had ran too far for the first one and so I didn't go for the second,'' said Sehwag who went to lunch at 99 (75 balls).

The opener was looking so formidable that he scored his 70 in just 45 balls and Sir Vivian Richards' record of 56-ball century looked in jeopardy.

Sehwag said the plan was to settle down first and then to launch into attack. ''I had decided that if I could survive the new ball for half an hour I will play my strokes. It was like that only and after 6-7 overs I started playing shots. Wicket was so easy I didn't even realise when I reached the nineties,'' said Sehwag.

''After lunch, the idea was to carry on. My work of hitting out was over by lunch and the new team goal was to bat long till tea and beyond. They had spread the field too so it was easy to take singles rather than scoring in boundaries,'' he added.

Sehwag also said that batting first on this wicket was right and the track would deteriorate by the fourth day.

''We had read the wicket well. We decided last night in team meeting only that if we win the toss we would bat first. Wicket didn't do anything for bowlers and was in favour of batsmen throughout. We want to bat all day tomorrow and score 550-600 runs so that we don't bat again. The wicket is getting slower and soil is coming off it so it will not be easy to bat on fourth and fifth day,'' said Sehwag.

Sehwag also revealed that his session with sports psychologist Rudi Webster helped him a lot in clearing the clutter in his mind.

''I had two and half hour chat with Rudi, it helped me a lot. He refreshed my brain. I told him everything that I had in heart. He told me these small routines that I could do before innings and it works you can say.'' Sehwag said that Webster had just insisted on him doing the basics right. ''It's about habit. After playing for long, sometimes players forget what basics to do before match or before every ball.

We didn't had psychologist before, its good to have one now with whom we can talk and refresh ourselves,'' said Sehwag.

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