Virender Sehwag broke the jinx of not scoring significantly in the second innings of a Test Match with a timely hundred. This maiden 2nd innings ton from Viru was instrumental in India saving the Adelaide Test. Aussies, of course won the Test Series 2-1. The fifth day’s play of the Adelaide Test was also the last one in the office for one of the best ever cricketers ever, Adam Gilchrist.
India had nine wickets in hand when they came out to bat on the final day. They lost both Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar in the first session itself. Rahul Dravid was the first to head back to the pavilion after getting hit on his knuckles by a spicy short delivery from Lee. Dravid had to retire hurt and eventually confirmation came that he broke his finger to be out of action for three weeks. India would have gone to lunch without the loss of any wickets before lunch. But a poor judgment from Sachin Tendulkar (13 from 36) in a non-existent single cost his wicket. India went to lunch confidently with Virender Sehwag completing a century in the first session itself having resumed on an overnight score of 31.
Virender Sehwag after lunch didn’t get carried away and started to tighten up his game for the sake of his team. His partner, Sourav Ganguly, who looked out of sorts didn’t last long on what could be his last innings ever in this country as he scooped one in the air off Johnson. Ganguly contributed 18 (in 31 balls) before he was brilliantly caught by Hussey at short extra covers. India at this stage got to 162 for 3 and a few overs after drinks lost VVS Laxman (12 from 30), who was caught down the legside by the keeper off a Lee short delivery. The lead for the Indians at this stage was 149 with a session and a half left in the Test Match. Fortunately for the Indians, Virender Sehwag continued to play with lot of discipline and determination to keep his end intact.
Sehwag was helped by Dhoni and the pair saw India through to the last session without any further damage. After Tea, Dhoni played his shots and with that the lead for India grew rapidly and out of reach for the Aussies if at all they had an opportunity to bat again. Aussies got the wickets of both Dhoni and Sehwag in the space of half an hour but it was too late by then. Dhoni got 20 from 44 balls with 3 fours and was dismissed by a breathtaking slip catch from Hayden. Sehwag was caught behind off a straighter one off Symonds which gave one last memorable dismissal for Gilchrist behind the stumps. Sehwag had done his job by playing an outstanding knock under pressure which gave him a standing ovation even from the Australian crowd! He made 151 (from 236 balls with 11 fours and 2 sixes) out of the 253 runs that were scored by his team then! With no chance of either side winning, the Test Match came to a stalemate in the last half an hour with India at a decent 269 for 7 having battled it out for 90 overs.
The presentation ceremony was all about the tributes to Adam Gilchrist, who was with his wife and three kids. The Player of the Series went to Brett Lee for his hard work right through the series. The Player of the Match was a surprising one as it was given to Sachin Tendulkar for his first innings 153 and not Virender Sehwag for his 63 and 151 along with a couple of wickets! Both teams have a much bigger match to play off the field tomorrow as the Harbhajan Singh case comes up to hearing. Things have again become dramatic with the news of a stump microphone evidence coming up against the accused.