India beat Australia
by one wickets as an injured VVS Laxman scored 73 to set up the win for
the hosts. The second and last Test of the series begins on October 9 in
Bangalore. Indeed, Very Very Special VVS Laxman found an unlikely ally
in the form of the lanky Ishant Sharma who stood his ground for a long
time carving out a resilient 31 which gave India the narrowest test victory
registered by the team ever.
Chasing 216, India started
off badly with wickets tumbling at regular intervals closing the 4th day
with a mere 50 runs at a loss of 4 crucial wickets. The 5th day began with
folded hands and praying lips but soon Sachin Tendulkar fell (38) heralding
another great Indian collapse as the team tottered for 124/8.
Just when all hopes had sunk,
Ishant Sharma arrived at the crease and put on 80 runs partnering Laxman
who stood tall amongst the ruins and finally led the team to a very narrow
victory in a thrilling, adrenaline-filled climax. With 11 runs needed,
Aussies had their chance as Pragyan Ojha was the last man out there at
the centre with 9 wickets down. However, a cautious approach by Ojha and
steely nerves by Laxman sailed India to safety.
Laxman made yet another
immortal score of 73 which may not sound colossal but was worth a triple
century given the circumstances and the unnerving atmosphere of the 5th
day. Clearly, the victory could have gone either way, but itís Test Cricket
that hoisted its triumphant flag in an era when T-20 cricket is audaciously
trying to kill it.
VVS Laxman and Ishant
Sharma piled up an unexpected 80 run partnership for the 9th wicket to
give India an unlikely victory in the 1st test of this 3 match test series.
Set a target of 216 by the Aussies, India crumbled to 124/8 after the departure
of Sachin Tendulkar, MS Dhoni and Harbhajan Singh in quick successions
but India scripted a remarkable comeback as Laxman set the match up with
a heroic assistance by the wild-haired Ishant.
Ishant contributed 31 and
just when India were on the threshold of a victory, he perished lending
the climax a thrilling edge. With 9 wickets down and merely 11 runs to
win, both the teams held their breaths as the spectators were on the edge
of their seats.
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