India vs West Indies 2nd Test Day 2: India’s future stars take over after Tendulkar’s 74

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

The Wankhede stadium gave Tendulkar a standing ovation for perhaps the last time in his illustrious 24-year career

India veteran batsman Sachin Tendulkar registered 74 runs in what could be his last ever international innings before the country’s future stars came out and had a chance to shine against the West Indies on the second day of the second Test in Mumbai.

Tendulkar’s 74 would definitely have been the highlight of all the fans in attendance at the Wankhede stadium, but the batting duo of Cheteshwar Pujara and Rohit Sharma deserve a lot of credit for their spectacular centuries.

India’s spin duo of Ravichandran Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha both deserve plenty of praise as well as they combined to dismiss three West Indian batsmen in quick succession to leave the men from the Caribbean in deep trouble at 43/3.

Tendulkar and Pujara started the day on 38 and 34 respectively and continued to build on their 80-run partnership.

The pair converted it into a 144-run partnership, during which Tendulkar smashed a picture perfect straight drive off the bowling of Tino Best to bring up his 68th half-century.

Pujara also brought up his half-century before the crowd were silenced when Tendulkar attempted a cut shot, which ended up getting a thick edge and landing safely in the hands of West Indies captain Darren Sammy at first slip.

Everyone gave Tendulkar a standing ovation as he walked off the pitch for perhaps the final time in his illustrious 24-year career.

Tendulkar’s brilliant knock of 74 came off 118 balls and included 12 boundaries.

Tendulkar became the 15th Indian batsman to score 50 more more in an innings in his last Test.

With the ‘Little Master’ back in the pavilion, Pujara and Virat Kohli kept the runs flowing with a fantastic 94-run partnership, during which Kohli recorded his half-century before getting edging a delivery from Shane Shillingford straight to Sammy in the slip region.

Kohli’s solid innings of 57 came off 78 balls and included five boundaries.

Despite the loss of Kohli, Pujara continued to press on and was soon raising his bat as he registered his fifth Test century.

However, he failed to convert it into a bigger score as he was out caught and bowled by Shillingford for 113 off 167 deliveries, which included 12 boundaries.

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni failed to make a major contribution with the bat as he too edged a delivery to Sammy in the slips and was on his way back to the pavilion with just four runs next to his name.

When taking the catch to dismiss Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Sammy became the seventh fielder in Test cricket history and the first from the West Indies to take five catches in an innings.

With India’s lower order batsmen starting to fall at regular intervals, Sharma started to heat up and went on a rampage against the West Indian bowlers.

Sharma flew past his half-century and within barely any time at all, he was creeping up on his second Test century.

With pace bowler Mohammed Shami being the last man in, Sharma concentrated on the task at hand and launched an almighty six over long on to bring up his second consecutive Test century.

Sharma became only the second Indian batsman to hit back-to-back centuries in his first two Test innings.

The first Indian to achieve the feat was former captain Sourav Ganguly, who scored two consecutive centuries in his debut Test series against England in 1996.

Just three overs later, India were bowled out for 495 when Shami was caught at deep square leg by Narsingh Deonarine off the bowling of Best.

Sharma and Shami’s 80-run partnership is now the highest tenth wicket stand for India against the West Indies, beating Javagal Srinath and Venkatapathy Raju’s 64-run partnership in Mohali in 1994.

Shillingford recorded his sixth five-wicket haul, while Deonarine picked up two wickets and Best and Shannon Gabriel chipped in with one wicket apiece.

Shillingford became the first bowler since 1953 to take five consecutive five-wicket hauls.

However, the 179 runs he gave away made his five-wicket haul the most expensive in a Test innings since Australia’s Jason Krejza conceded 215 runs for his eight wickets against India in Nagpur in 2008.

India’s lead of 313 is their fourth-highest first innings lead against the West Indies.

Trailing by 313, the West Indies got off to the worst start possible as opening batsman Kieran Powell was dismissed for just nine runs when lofting a delivery from Ashwin straight to long on.

Disaster struck just three overs later when Best, who came out as the nightwatchman, was given out lbw off the bowling of Ojha for nine runs as well.

Things went from bad to worse for the West Indies as Darren Bravo edged a delivery from Ashwin to Murali Vijay at second slip to be dismissed for 11.

Following Bravo’s dismissal, the umpires brought play to an end for the day and the West Indies finished on 43/3.

Ashwin was the pick of the Indian bowlers with two wickets, while Ojha snapped up one.

The West Indies will resume batting at 09:30 local time or 04:00 GMT.

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