Indian struggle to reach 210 for six at tea

Bangalore, Oct 11 (UNI) The famed Indian batting line up failed to live up to its tag as home team was left struggling at 210 at six in the first innings chasing the Australian first innings total of 430 at tea on the third day of the first test being played at M Chinnaswamy stadium here today.

Exhibiting his fighting capabilities, Sourav Ganguly remained unbeaten on 38 and keeping him company at the tea break was Harbhajan Singh batting at 12.

India lost two wickets between lunch and tea. While Rahul Dravid (51) was dismissed to a doubtful leg before decision, wicket-keeper batsman M S Dhoni struggled for 65 minutes to make just nine runs to be the six man out. India would have to score another 26 runs to avoid the follow on with four wickets in hand.

Dhoni, who looked not in his usual self, was clean bowled by a straight delivery pitched on off stump with the One-day captain playing inside the line.

However, Dravid, playing his 100th test at number three, looked in good touch and made its 23rd half century on Indian soil equaling Sunil Gavaskar's record of most fifties scored at the home grounds. He was rather unlucky to be declared leg before to Watson for a ball that hit the batsman above his knee role. Umpire Asad Rouf however had no doubts and raised his finger.

Just a ball earlier he had completed his half century made in 102 balls in 144 minutes hitting seven boundaries.

The Pakistani umpire had come under the scanner earlier when he ruled out Mathew Hayden caught behind yesterday and sent back Gambhir declaring him leg before for a ball that looked to miss the leg stump this morning.

Despite a good start given by the openers Gambhir and Sehwag India lost six wickets in the two sessions after resuming at the overnight score of 68 for no loss.

Mitchell Johnson wrecked the Indian top order claiming three wickets for 42 runs in the morning. Earlier Bret Lee, who bowled with fire, triggered the collapse by sending back Gambhir in the second over of the morning session. Johnson scalped key batsmen like Sehwag, Tendulkar and Laxman.

In his day's first spell the left handed pacer had an impressive figures of 8.5-3-19-3 to put Indians on the backfoot.

Ganguly, the lone batsman standing for India, fought hard to keep the Australian bowling attack at bay despite receiving a nasty hit on the helmet off a Bret Lee bouncer. In 61 minute stay, Ganguly has so far struck three boundaries facing 99 deliveries.


Story first published: Saturday, October 11, 2008, 15:33 [IST]
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