Friday, January 4, 2008

Australia vs India 2nd Test 2008: VVS Laxman and Dravid the savior of India team?

Before the start of the second Test, Indian players were hopeful to play well and come back in the series at SCG. Indian middle order pair Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman showed the way to fight back in the series after making a 175 runs partnership in the second wicket after lost Wasim Jaffer with only eight on board.

Their big innings reached India 216 for 3 at stumps with a stylish 109 from VVS Laxman after Australia was dismissed 463 shortly before lunch at the SCG. However, India team is still 247 runs away from the first innings. Sachin Tendulkar was not out 9 with Sourav Ganguly who scored 21 at stump.

Laxman and Dravid pair protested Aussies bowling action in soft hand after Wasim Jaffer bowled out by Brett Lee at 8. Third time Wasim Jaffer failed to make any big score in Australia tour.

Paceman Mitchell Johnson finally made the break throw to remove the painfully slow-scoring Dravid caught at slip when he was 53 off facing 160 balls.

This was not new for this pair to make partnership. They did it many times against same opposition team.

Dravid and Laxman had defied Australia with a 376 run partnership in Kolkata in 2000-01 and 303 run stand in Adelaide four years ago, the pair steadily edged India into a position of strength.

His heroic 281 helped snap Steve Waugh’s team’s world record, 16-match winning run in 2000-01.

33 year old tall batsman Laxman scored his 12th Test century and fifty against Australia. It was the third Test century in fourth Test innings at the SCG. On the other hand, Dravid took his 50th Test fifty in 200th innings. Laxman fell six balls after Dravid’s demise.

Again bad umpiring pointed the main issue. Australian wicketkeeper Adam Gilchrist, who is the dominating wicketkeeper cum batsman in the world, claimed second position after South African Mark Boucher taking 399 dismissals. He dropped two easy catches of Dravid on 18 and Laxman on 77. Dravid also caught in slip on 15 from a no-ball from Johnson.

Now, it is the time for other batsmen to show their natural game if they want to get win or make the match draw.

Can Indian strong middle order batting line up does it? We can see it tomorrow when Sachin and Sourav will face Aussies bowlers.

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