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Dravid, Tendulkar consolidate India innings at tea

Dhaka, Jan 25 (Calcutta Tube) Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid consolidated a strong start to overwhelm Bangladesh’s first innings total by 68 runs with India reaching 301 for two at tea on the second day of the second cricket Test at the Sher-e-Bangla Stadium here Monday.

At the break, Tendulkar was batting at 89 and Dravid at 79, India not losing any wicket in the second session.

Tendulkar and Dravid rustled up 155 runs for the third wicket after Virender Sehwag (56) and Gautam Gambhir (68), in a century opening stand, gave India the ideal start.

The hosts, however, began the day on the right note as they tested the Indian openers with shorter deliveries. The move paid rich dividends and India lost both Gambhir and Sehwag before lunch.

Tendulkar and Dravid took the score forward in the same vein. Both were lucky to have got reprieves and made the most of it. Bangladesh have only themselves to blame as they dropped Tendulkar twice.

Tendulkar, when on 27, edged Rubel Hossain to Raqibul Hasan at gully, but was dropped. He brought up his 50 off 89 balls with four fours but soon hit Shahadat Hossain to Raqibul, who once again muffed the catch, though a tougher one to his left.

Both Tendulkar and Dravid came down heavily on the spinners with the latter bringing his fifty, from 81 balls and seven fours.

In fact, Dravid’s fifty came before Tendulkar, who after some initial hiccups, played freely

Earlier, Gambhir and Sehwag compiled 103 runs.

Sehwag, who resumed the day at an individual score of 41, looked in ominous touch as he drove to covers to bring his 50 off 51 balls with seven fours. But it was not long before Shahadat pitched a shorter one that caught Sehwag’s gloves and went straight to wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim. Sehwag’s 63-ball innings included eight fours.

Gambhir, who was gunning to equal Don Bradman’s record of six consecutive Test centuries, soon brought up his half century from 60 balls, which included nine boundaries. It was Gambhir’s 11th consecutive Test fifty which brought him at par with West Indian great Vivian Richards.

Gambhir edged a bouncer from Shafiul Islam (1-51) to give an easy catch to wicketkeeper Rahim. Gambhir’s innings came in 83 balls and with nine fours.

Dravid, after taking some time to settle, played fluently but was lucky to survive when on 28. A Rubel Hossain bouncer caught Dravid off-guard and he was caught by Junaid Siddique at slip but umpire Billy Bowden signalled a no-ball.

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