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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

India ride on Murali Vijay's ton at Gabba !

Today at Brisbane, at 12.1 – Dhawan scored a 4 off Johnson completing their first 50-plus opening stand in an away Test ~ coming as it did for the Team after the one at  Lord's 2011 – do you know who were involved in that partnership ?

A leading Aussie Press screams - warming to conditions more familiar to Goa beachgoers than a Gabba Test match crowd, opener Murali Vijay led a perfectly-placed Indian counterpunch that sapped Steve Smith’s Australians of more than their spirit on day one of the second Commonwealth Bank Test. Having been cruelly denied the single that would have carried him to a deserved century last week in Adelaide, Vijay defied Brisbane’s steamy heat and predictions that the tourists’ batting would fold on a fast, bouncy pitch to post a clinical 144.

The 2nd Test started at Brisbane today . The Gabba is an icon of the Brisbane landscape and is the home ground for the Brisbane Lions AFL team and the Queensland Bulls state cricket team.  The 42,000 seat stadium boasts unrestricted views of the oval playing surface from all areas making it ideal to host international sporting and entertainment events.  There are no public car parks at The Gabba and on event days, fifteen minute parking limits apply across most of the ‘Gabba Traffic Area’  Public Transport is the best way to get to the Gabba on event days. Customers with a pre-purchased event ticket or a stadium membership card can travel free to and from the game at The Gabba on all network-wide Brisbane Transport buses and Queensland Rail City Network trains – that is about the transportation over there.

Pujara got a rough decision – given out caught behind, when the ball clearly brushed the grill of helmet – but with India opposing DRS – there effectively was no choice to question, though the primary expectation from the Umpire is to give right decisions.

At stumps, it is 311/4 – a healthy score for the visitors.  Murali Vijay played a grand knock making majority of his runs in the first and third sessions.  Here is some statistical delight from cricinfo. :

144 Runs scored by Murali Vijay during India's first innings. The last Indian batsman to score a hundred at the Gabba, Saurav Ganguly, also made exactly 144, in December 2003. 5 Number of Indian openers who have made three consecutive 50-plus scores in a series outside the subcontinent - Sunil Gavaskar (West Indies, 1971), Madhav Apte (West Indies, 1953), Gautam Gambhir (South Africa, 2010), Shiv Sunder Das (Zimbabwe, 2001) and now Vijay.  With his 144, Vijay became the first overseas opener to score a century in the first innings of a Gabba Test  71 Runs scored by Vijay off the last 63 balls that he faced, at a strike rate of 112.7. He scored only 73 runs off his first 150 balls, at a strike rate of 48.7.

311 Runs scored by India on the first day of this Test. India are the first overseas team in 54 years to have scored 300-plus runs on the first day of a Test at the Gabba. The last time this happened was when West Indies made 359 for 7 on the first day of the famous tied Test in 1960.

Getting back to that 50 run partnership – the last time it came was in Test no. 2000 at Lords in July 2011.  It was Abhinav Mukund and Gautam Gambhir – latter made 15, while the left handed Mukund, who couple of days made a century against J&K at Dindigul made 49.   He played just 5 tests aggregating 211 –  3 in WI and 2 at England, the last one being at Nottingham. His innings card reads : 11&25; 1&48; 62; 49&12; and 0&3.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

17th Dec 2014.  

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