Australia turn up heat on India in Bangalore Test (Lunch Report)

October 13th, 2008 - 1:58 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, Oct 13 (IANS) Indian batsmen had an uphill task on the fifth day here Monday to save the first cricket Test against Australia.Set a challenging 299 to win in 83 overs, the hosts had lost two wickets for 41 runs at the M. Chinnaswamy stadium, still needing to bat out 66 overs in two sessions to save the match. They need to score another 258 runs for an improbable victory.

Gautam Gambhir (batting 12) and Sachin Tendulkar (batting 16) were at the crease. Tendulkar was in fine nick, hitting three delectable boundaries in his 40-minute tenure so far. At the start of his innings, he needed 64 runs to pass Brian Lara’s record Test aggregate of 11,953 runs (131 matches).

Sehwag (6) perished in the sixth over, snared by Matthew Hayden at first slip off Stuart Clark, who bagged his first wicket on Indian soil. Dravid (5) followed Sehwag into the hutch, uppishly on-driving Brett Lee to a lunging Ricky Ponting at short mid-wicket, leaving the Indian innings in a shambles at 24 for two.

Earlier in the morning, Australia declared their second innings at 228 for six to give themselves a chance to go one up in the four-match series and record their third successive victory at Bangalore. They had won here in 1998 and 2004.

Resuming at their overnight 193 for five, Australia added 35 runs in five overs while losing Shane Watson (41) to Ishant Sharma to the eighth ball of an overcast day.

Brad Haddin, who was spilled by skipper Anil Kumble off his own bowling in the first ball of the day, remained unbeaten on 35. Debutant Cameron White, asked to give the charge, made an unbeaten 18 off 14 deliveries.

Kumble, who returned to the pavilion after completing his over to tend to a finger injury, may now miss the second Test at Mohali, beginning Oct 17. But there was no official word on the injury yet.

Ishant was the most impressive of the Indian bowlers, finishing with figures of 3 for 40 to take his match tally to seven wickets. Harbhajan Singh claimed two wickets at the expense of 74 runs.

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