London, Aug 22: India have finally managed to restore some of their lost pride. Carried on by the Sachin Tendulkar and Amit Mishra's unbeaten half-centuries, India have reduced the England lead to 75 runs. At the time the lunch was taken on Day 5 of the Oval Test, India were 216/3 with Sachin and Mishra unbeaten on 72 and 57 respectively.
India started the final day of the ongoing fourth Test the series with 162 runs behind England's 1st innings total. The pair of Sachin Tendulkar and Amit Mishra started off positively and began to play their strokes from the onset.
Tendulkar hit Anderson for two boundaries to move into his forties while Amit Mishra, batted with the ease of a frontline batsman and tackled both Anderson and Swann with ease.
Sachin, then square-cut an Anderson delivery for a single to bring up his fifty. It was when England probably felt the need to tighten screws, and what followed was a period of lull. Both Tendulkar and Mishra, displayed good understanding of the situation and played themselves in, thus forcing England to opt for a more defensive field.
As the session progressed, the English bowlers faced their first real experience of bowling at Indian batsmen as the duo of Sachin and Mishra, began to score at will. Mishra, batted like a frontline batsman and together with Tendulkar, ensured that the lead went below 100, without any loss.
England, meanwhile were conspicious of not using Tim Bresnan until the last 30 minutes of the first session. More baffling was their choice of giving Bopara the ball, before Bresnan.
With the score-board reading 203/3, Alastair Cook dropped a chance offered by Sachin of Swann's bowling. However, that was the only blip, as the little master, played with enough and patience and determination, to give his fans a hope that the 100th ton would be coming in this match.
However, even the introduction of Bresnan, appeared ineffective, as the Indian batsmen finally appeared to be coming into their own. With the pitch offering little assistance, and the Indian batsmen showing some determination, the match appears to be slipping out of England's hand.