India need eight wickets more to win Chittagong Test

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

CHITTAGONG - Gautam Gambhir smashed his fifth Test century on the trot to join a select band of cricketers as India pinned down Bangladesh on the fourth day of the first Test here Wednesday.

Set a tough victory target of 415 runs, Bangladesh lost two wickets for 67 runs and are 348-runs behind. Zaheer Khan and Ishant Sharma took one wicket each. Tamim Iqbal (23) and Mohammad Ashraful (16) were at the crease.

Gambhir joins Sir Donald Bradman, Jacques Kallis and Mohammad Yousuf who have scored five hundreds in successive Tests. Bradman, in fact, has scored six in a row.

Gambhir has overtaken his teammate Rahul Dravid who has scored four successive Test hundreds.

India declared the second innings at 413 for eight with Gambhir scoring a fluent 116 off 129 balls while VVS Laxman (69) and Amit Mishra (50) chipping in to swell the total.

India, who were shot out for 243 in the first innings, made amends in the second knock after the bowlers had showed them the way, packing off Bangladesh for 242 Tuesday.

Resuming at 122/1 Wednesday, India scored 137 runs in the morning session from 31.4 overs. Left-handed Gambhir was in full flow hitting some delightful strokes through the

off side.

Gambhir got good support from night watchman Mishra, who scored his maiden Test half-century. Gambhir and Mishra added 98 runs for the second wicket.

Gambhir had been India’s most reliable batsman in recent times and four of his five centuries, including this knock, have come in the second innings, all in different conditions and circumstances in either pulling India out of trouble or setting up the game.

Mishra was the first to be dismissed in the morning when he charged down the track, trying to clear mid-off, but was caught by Tamim Iqbal off Mahmudullah. His 70-ball 50 had six fours.

Gambhir got a life when he was dropped on 55. He was finally dismissed while attempting a cut shot but finding Shariar Nafees at third man off debutant pacer Shafiul Islam. Gambhir’s 129-ball knock had 10 fours and one six.

Dravid made a 50-ball 24 before he was run out just before lunch.

Laxman then guided India’s batting with an 89-ball 69 with the help of five fours.

India lost the wickets of Sachin Tendulkar (16), Yuvraj Singh (25) and Dinesh Karthik (27) after lunch but Laxman stayed solid at the other end facing 72 balls for his 50.

Zaheer Khan (20) struck three fours in an over off Shaiful, coming on with the second new ball, just before tea.

India led by 385 runs at tea and added another 28 before calling off the innings.

will not be displayed