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Friday, December 16, 2005

a seemingly impossible task

Sachin Tendulkar, the master blaster has now posted 35 centuries - a record of the highest number of centuries in Test Cricket. In the course of a career of 15 years, he has 4 double centuries to his credit but, sadly, no triple ones.

The problems for Indians to post large individual scores are many – first and foremost, the toss must be won. Then one must get adequate time to settle down and have partners who can give him company on the pitch for a sufficient length of time. This is one aspect where we never seem to succeed – we have become so tuned to the fast version of the game that we want to hurry through the game expecting miracles to happen, partners keep departing leaving the individual high and dry – all he can do is to sigh, lament and curse his luck. Patience is certainly not one of our virtues; we are never able to arrive at the correct proportion of aggression and defense. Once we crawl into the shell, we are seldom able to recover the lost ground.

Don Bradman scored 309 not out on the first day itself of the 1930 Ashes and went on to score 334 with 46 fours from 436 balls – he was an exception.

In contrast, Brian Lara posted 400 not out off 582 balls against the Test match with England in Antigua. It included 43 fours and four sixes. In doing so, Lara eclipsed the previous batting record of 380 established just six months ago by Australia’s Matthew Hayden. Ridley Jacobs gave fantastic support to Lara by remaining not out on 107. It took the side to 752 for five declared – the second highest score in West Indies history and the highest by any country against England. Before that, on April 18, 1994 Lara surpassed the 365 made by Sir Garfield Sobers.

It will be a miracle to surpass the milestone of Brian Lara.

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