India in complete command of Kolkata Test
India took firm control of the second Test against Pakistan at the Eden Gardens as they ammased 98 runs in the session, for the loss of just one wicket, that of overnight batsman Wasim Jaffer for 202. Local boy Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman looked completely in command over proceedings as the duo dominated the Pakistani bowlers right from the word go. India went into lunch at 449 for four, with Ganguly on 62 and Laxman on 41.
The Indian opener began the day from where he left off the previous evening as he struck a magnificient backward punch through cover point off Shoaib Akthar to begin his scoring for the day. The ball after next, he played one past gully for four to reach his second double-century of his brief international career. However, he could not extend his knock beyond 202 as he stabbed at one from Sohail Tanvir that slanted away from him.
Jaffer’s knock was the best innings by an Indian batsman against Pakistan in India. He surpassed his former opening partner Virender Sehwag and Anshuman Gaekwad as both of them scored 201 against Pakistan on previous occasions.
After Jaffer’s departure, VVS Laxman joined Ganguly at the crease and his approach was nothing short of positive. He got off to a brilliant start with a typically well-timed forward push off Tanvir for a boundary, and since then never lowered his tempo. Once he set his eyes in, Laxman looked ominous, as he played some sumptuous ground-strokes off Shoaib Akhtar and Sohail Tanvir. India breezed past 400 in a Tanvir over, which fetched them 17 runs, including four boundaries. Pakistan tried pulling things back, but once Ganguly reached his second half-century at Kolkata, the runs started to bleed once again for the hosts.
Ganguly came up with some of his typical strokes through the off-side, and looked completely flawless throughout his stint in the crease this morning. His timing was brilliant, and what made the timing look better was the placement of his strokes.
Pakistan’s bowling, which lacked intensity on the opening day improved in the initial part of the morning, thanks to an overnight talking by Geoff Lawson. But once, the runs started to flow, they looked jaded and listless.
India will be eyeing a heavy score of around 600 and ensure they dont bat again in the remainder of the Test match.