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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Boxing Day test - India grit their way vs Oz

The Indians put up a better bowling display in the morning to wrap up the last four Oz wickets, led by the swing of Zaheer Khan. The Aussies will be dreading the very sight of this bowler from now on, the bowler having retained his rhythm back after bowling a good number of balls this innings. Ishant and Umesh was supportive in their efforts to restrict the run-scoring without managing any wickets on the day. Ashwin came to the party to take the last two wickets, especially the last one was a wonderful sight to watch. A flighted ball on the middle-wicket that straightened to defeat the sweep and hit the stumps, must have given the Aussies another headache to deal with.

The Indian reply started in the usual fashion with their openers taking quick singles and rotating the strike. Gambhir was fleet-footed and ended his innings with a poke to the keeper. Sehwag continued merrily, chancing his arm and keeping the bowlers (and fielders) interested. Viru's batting is good to keep the captain and his bowlers occupied in thinking of various strategies to put in place. Whether they implement or not, the non-striker benefits from this by settling down at the crease. Rahul played a very typical innings that was very much in-sync with his nature and character. Grinding down the attack while Sehwag and later Sachin scored boundaries, Dravid accumulated runs in his own way.

Tendulkar had decided to score runs when it was offered, especially with his patented upper-cut with which he scored many boundaries on the day. He was picking runs with a great flourish and steady run-rate that was adequate for an ODI. The impending close of day was a distraction that slowed Sachin down, sending him into a shell. Peter Siddle was unlucky not to have Dravid dismissed because of his over-stepping nature. It was a similar delivery that  dismissed Sachin in the fag end of the day.

A good day for the Indians when they captured all the three sessions of the day to take a lead over the Aussies in the Session dashboard. Tomorrow, they will hope to consolidate their position and take a lead of hundred runs before being dismissed.
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