Friday, March 16, 2012

Ind vs B'desh: Sachin Tendulkar's 100th ton powers

The entire nation had been waiting with bated breath for the past one year for their favourite son to complete the coveted landmark. 

Exactly one year and four days since he scored his 99th international ton against South Africa during a World Cup match in Nagpur, India's most worshipped sporting icon neatly tapped a delivery from left-arm spinner Shakib-Al-Hasan behind square leg in the 44th over of the Indian innings to complete his hundred. 

It took him 138 deliveries probably one of his slowest ODI tons but the relief was palpable more than excitement and happiness of having achieved what was unthinkable even a decade ago. 

After completing his century, he however opened up hitting pacer Sahadat Hossain for back to back boundaries as his partner Suresh Raina sent the opposition bowlers on a leatherhunt in favourable conditions as he smashed a quickfire 51 off 38 balls with help of five fours and two sixes. 

He was finally out in the 47th over when he tried to hit Mashrafe Mortaza out of the ground only to edge it to Mishfiqur Rahim behind the stumps. It certainly wasn't the best of knocks as his 114 came off 147 balls with help of 12 boundaries and a six. 

The pressure of reaching 100th hundred was evident as he took 36 deliveries after reaching 80 reach 100. There were times when he would try and go for quick singles only to be denied by the alert Bangaldeshi fielders who otherwise were pathetic in the outfield. 
After being sent into bat, India lost Gautam Gambhir early as he played onto a Shafiul Islam delivery that was angled across. 

Tendulkar and Virat Kohli (66, 82 balls, 5x4) added 148 runs for the second wicket. During the earlier part of the innings, Tendulkar looked in fine touch as he hit some crisp shots on both sides of the wicket. He lifted Shakib wide of long-on for his only six. He completed his 50 off 63 balls when he hit the former Bangal captain inside out over extra cover for a boundary. 

Kohli, who was eyeing a hat-trick of ODI tons having scored back to back 100s in Hobart and at this very ground was left disappointed as he dragged a wide delivery from left-arm spinner Abdur Razzaq onto his stumps. 

With ball hardl doing anything and the bounce which was below knee-roll, the situation was ideal for Raina to show his pyrotechnics. He played an innings so typical of him. 

The Tendulkar-Raina partnership for the third wicket yielded 86 runs in a 10.5 overs which helped India reach a commendable total. It was skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (21 no, 11 balls, 2x4) who blasted a couple boundaries to take India past 280. 

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