Laxman, Dhoni resurrect India after Pakistan's fightback
Nov 24: India trails by only three runs after getting 228 for 6 at the end of day two with a trivial edge over Pakistan
A 115-run stand for the sixth wicket between VVS Laxman and Mahendra Singh Dhoni propped up India after a shaky start by the Indian batsmen, to wrap up day two with a slight edge over Pakistan in the first Test of the three match Test series played at the Ferozeshah Kotla stadium here on Friday.
Earlier Pakistan first innings came to an end on a total of 231. The visitors could only add 21 runs in 10.2 overs after 51 minutes of the second days play.
Misbah-Ul-Haq and Mohammed Sami took their team's to a respectable total adding valuable 87 runs, before Misbah fell to a bizarre run out. Misbah's more than five hour stay in the middle came to an abrupt end. He faced 243 balls and hit six boundaries apart from a six during his knock of 82.
Misbah ran for a single after pushing a Saurav Ganguly delivery to point, which was directly hit by Dinesh Kaarthick at the bowlers end producing an unusual dismissal after Misbah jumped into the air while trying to avoid the throw hitting him. Misbah's jump caught him in the air inside the propping crease, which landed him later in the pavilion.
Five minutes later Anil Kumble cleaned up Danish Kaneria for a duck with his trademark faster one getting Pakistan all out for 231. Sami remained unbeaten at 28.
Kumble emerged as the pick of the Indian bowlers, claiming four for 38, while Zaheer Khan scalped two for 45.
After bowling out the visitors under 250 India was tottering at 93 for five before the stylish Laxman (57 not out) and Dhoni (57) revived the hosts back in the game after Pakistan led a strong fightback.
The match is still wide open with both the teams are evenly poised and much depends on Saturday's play. The Kotla pitch is already on the slower side and expected to deteriorate in coming days, a result is very much on the cards.
It will be difficult for India as they have to play last here and therefore they would look to take an ample first innings lead to give themselves any chance of winning the Test.
India was 228 for 6 trailing only by three runs, as Laxman patient knock of 57 came of 107 balls, included seven gutsy boundaries, and Anil Kumble (7) were at the crease with once again bad light stopped play.
The match is swinging like the pendulum's way with Pakistan bowlers dominated the first two session and later Laxman and Dhoni were the focal point of the final session that saw India's come back in the match.
Rawalpindi Express came to the fore for Pakistan removing Dinesh Kaarthick (9) in the fifth over, who nicked one outside the off stump which landed safely in Kamran Akmal's hands.
Wasim Jaffer (32) and Rahul Dravid (38) provided some resistance, as India went into lunch at 46 for one.
Dravid survived a first ball leg before appeal but silenced his critics and the visitors with three smart boundaries in the next over to debutant Sohail Tanvir. He drove one through cover and struck two similar boundaries through mid-wicket region.
Pakistan again staged a return in the match with catastrophe struck India in the Tea session. The hosts slumped to 93 for five from 71 for one.
Shoaib struck again trapping Jaffer and two balls later, Sachin Tendulkar (1) messed it up going for a non-existent second run and paying the price at the end.
Dravid pushed one to square leg and went for single but Tendulkar set off for a second run which was not there. Dravid called him no but it was too late then, as reached Akmal whipped off the bails in a flash after receiving Mohammad Yousuf's throw providing the crucial run out and wicket to Pakistanis.
The Kotla boisterous crowd turned silent, as Tendulkar made a return towards the dressing room. Sohail Tanvir improved his performance with every passing spell and came up with a double-wicket burst in the third spell pushing India to the backfoot as half of the illustrious Indian batting line-up sitting at the pavilion with scoreboard reading just 95.
Sourav Ganguly (8) pulled one back Tanvir's delivery onto his stumps in the 26th over. The left-arm seamer castled Dravid (38) with a beauty that swung back late foxing the most technically sound Indian batsman. India was struggling at 139 for 5 at Tea.
The last session of the day went to India's favour with Laxman's determined and eye-soothing batting was in tandem with Dhoni's brave act. Laxman straight drive to the fence in the 41st over was the shot of the day. With Laxman scoring freely with his crafty wrist work from one end, Dhoni was striking the ball with sheer power.
The pair got past Pakistani attack with consummate ease taking their side to safe passage. Dhoni's 57 included eight boundaries; he was eventually caught by Akmal off Danish Kaneria.
Read More: Tilangpur Kotla | Kotla Gujran | Kotla | Kotla Surajmal | Rani Kotla | Kotla Mangwal Bo | Kotla So | Qusba Kotla | Laxman Chapra | Sami | Laxman Garh | Rohaniya Laxman Singh | Dhoni | Sohail | Soh | Laxman Bigha | Fri | Laxman Nagar | Sourav Ganguly | Rahul Dravid | Mahendra Singh Dhoni | Sachin Tendulkar
Ranbir Kapoor stays away from social-networking sites
May 25, 2013 at 9:37 AM
CONGRESS BRASS TO IMPLEMENT MEASURES TO STRENGTHEN PARTY
May 24, 2013 at 10:49 PM
GURUNATH MEIYAPPAN LANDS IN MUMBAI FOR QUESTIONING
May 24, 2013 at 10:40 PM