By Brian Thomas
Taking lunch on 93 for no loss Murali Vijay and Virendra Shewag had a field day against a Sri Lankan attack that came under fire at the Barboun Stadium in Mumbai. The story looked very similar to the script at Kanpur.
A prediction by many pundits that this pitch would help Sri Lankan spinners is only a fantasy to state the least. Muttia Muralitheran and Rangana Herath were given a hiding of their lives with Shewag stroking an unbeaten 151 inclusive of 19 boundaries and 5 sixes. Batting on 56 Shewag got the benefit of the doubt off a Muralitheran top spinner with Umpire Nigel Long turning down a definite LBW decisions in favor of the batsman.
Murali Vijaya, rode his luck and succeeded in scoring 87 runs before being dismissed LBW off a Rangana Herath straight delivery. The youngster from Tamil Nadu played across the line after executing 10 boundaries and a glorious six in his 187 minute stay at the wickets.
Ranjith Fernando former Sri Lanka cricketer turned commentator told this scribe that in India a score of 393 is not good enough to stay in contention to winning a test, since most Indian pitches offers plenty for the batsman on days one and two and to some extent on day 3 as well.
He also added that Sri Lanka lost too many wickets on day one.
At tea it’s bad reading if you are a Sri Lankan fan. India 260 for 1 wicket with shewag unbeaten on 151 and with him is the wall himself Dravid batting on 17.
FIRST SESSION DAY 2.
Sri Lanka missed out on two accounts this morning. Overnight batsman Angelo Mathews, ran himself out for 99 and Sri Lanka’s target of 400 plus runs was not achieved since they were wrapped up for 393.
Top order batsman Dilshan and Paranavitthana ,excelled while Sangagkara and Mahela disappointing, considering their capabilities. Prassana Jayawardena batting on 43 missed a golden opportunity. However Credit must go to Sri Lanka’s middle order, namely Mathews and Prasanna Jayawardena, former for his 99 and latter for his valuable contribution of 43.
India won the session, with both openers Murali Vijay and Virendra Sehwag batting with ease against the Sri Lankan attack. Kulasekera got pass the outside edge of both openers, on numerous occasions but he was not threatening. Spin was introduce in the ninth over, however the Indian duo enjoyed negotiating Rangana Herath, by using their feat and stroking him to both sides of the wickets, with the pitch tailor made for batting.
Murali bowled just one over before lunch but looked ineffective. The pitch is playing easy, India will be happy to bat right through the day and maybe for two more sessions tomorrow. Hosts went in for lunch with 93 runs on the board with both openers in tack.
Shewag is batting on 53 and Murali Vijay is unbeaten on 38