Laxman’s half-century takes India to 117/2 (Lunch report)

July 30th, 2011 - 8:08 pm ICT by IANS  

Sachin Tendulkar Nottingham, July 30 (IANS) A strokeful half-century by V.V.S. Laxman took India to 117 for two at lunch in reply to England’s first innings 221 runs on the second day of the second cricket Test here at Trent Bridge here Saturday.

Rahul Dravid was batting on 44 along with Sachin Tendulkar (14) at the break as India reduced the deficit to 104 runs under overcast conditions.

Dravid and Laxman (54) added 93 runs for the second-wicket to negate any threat from the England bowlers, who gave very little away.

Laxman fell to Tim Bresnan, edging a prodigious outswinger he could not leave soon after completing his 50.

Resuming at 24 for one, Laxman took on the attack with two consecutive crisply timed fours off pace spearhead James Anderson in the second over of the day. The first was a cut that crashed into deep point boundary, and off the next delivery Laxman stood tall to drive past the diving extra cover fielder.

In the next over, Dravid flicked Stuart Broad in front of square leg for a four and followed it with an effortless drive through the covers.

The duo never looked in hurry and waited to pounce on the loose deliveries. Two consecutive maiden overs from Broad and Anderson did not rattle the Indians, who were ready to grind it out.

Laxman brought up his half-century in style by hitting Bresnan fluently past extra cover — his best shot of the morning. Laxman’s 112-ball knock, comprising 10 fours, finally ended as he edged it to wicketkeeper Matt Prior.

Dravid benefited from the vacant third-man region as he steered four of his nine boundaries through that gap between slips and gully.

Tendulkar started emphatically by punching Trott through the covers and in the next over hit Bresnan past gully for another four.

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