Report: Irani Cup 2013 – Mum vs ROI, Day 3
It was the day of the 2013 Irani Cup match that innumerable people were waiting for. In the second over of the day, Sachin Tendulkar walked out to bat at the Wankhede Stadium and regaled his fellow Mumbaikars by scoring a strokefilled century. In the end, he was stranded at 140 as Mumbai were all-out for 409, handing a healthy 117-run lead to Rest Of India.
At the end of the day, ROI were 27 for one after Dhawal Kulkarni dismissed Shikhar Dhawan in the first over. Their lead has been stretched to 144 runs. Murali Vijay (18*) and S Sreesanth (7*) are ROI’s overnight batsmen.
The day was, however, dominated by Tendulkar’s fluent and attractive knock. There was the cover-drive off the backfoot, the gentle pushes on the off-side that raced away to the fence and the gorgeous on-drives timed to a tee. Peppered amid the class was flamboyance, in form of sweeps and inside-out flat sixes. Tendulkar brought up his half-century by slogging Harbhajan Singh over the mid-wicket fence. In all, he struck 18 fours and two sixes.
Ajinkya Rahane batted beautifully with Tendulkar to bring up a 73-run stand for the fourth wicket. En route his 83, Rahane played lovely drives on the up and complemented them with solid defence. His foot movement was precise and mindset clear.
Rahane looked set for a big one. But his innings was cut short when he was given out lbw to Harbhajan Singh despite an inside edge. Rohit Sharma (0) faced 11 balls without getting off the mark and holed out trying to slog Harbhajan off the 12th delivery he faced. Abhishek Nayar (1) lost his concentration and his wicket to an ordinary shot off the fourth ball after the lunch break.
At 257/6, Mumbai still trailed ROI by 269 and Tendulkar had Ankeet Chavan for company. Together they notched up a century stand for the seventh wicket to put Mumbai’s innings on track after the fall of three quick wickets.
After a brief period of consolidation, Tendulkar pulled out his shots again. When on 92, he survived a stumping chance off Pragyan Ojha. S Sreesanth tested him with some well-directed bouncers, which the master batsman evaded with ease.
He played a stunning cover drive to get to 99 and when he guided a Sreesanth delivery in the 92nd over for a single, he made the Wankhede Stadium come alive. The crowd had come to see Tendulkar score a hundred and the master obliged them. It was Tendulkar’s 81st first-class century, which is a joint Indian record with the legendary Sunil Gavaskar. An over later, with a splendid straight drive, Tendulkar completed 25,000 runs in first-class cricket.
Harbhajan bagged 3/64 in 21 overs, while Ojha finished with 2/103. Pandey and Abhimanyu Mithun too bagged two wickets each.
Day 1: Rest Of India 1st innings 330/5 (Vijay 116; Nayar 2/49)
Day 2: Rest Of India 1st innings 526 (Vijay 116, Raina 134; Chavan 3/56); Mumbai 1st innings 155/2 (Jaffer 80, Rahane 55*)
Day 3: Mumbai 1st innings 409 (Jaffer 80, Rahane 83, Tendulkar 140*; Harbhajan Singh 3/64); ROI 2nd innings 27/1 (Vijay 18*; Kulkarni 1/10)