Sachin Tendulkar and Murali Vijay stretched their promising overnight stand to as many as 308 runs as India finished the fourth day’s play with 435 for 5 at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore. Tendulkar is still unconquered as he batted through the entire three sessions to move onto 191 (from 319 balls with 20 fours and 2 sixes) and is approaching what could be his 6th double century. Murali Vijay batted out for 433 minutes facing 310 balls to score a career best of 139 (with 14 fours and 2 sixes).
The hosts are now just 43 runs behind the Aussies and have got the pair of Tendulkar and Skipper MS Dhoni (11*) to start things fresh tomorrow morning. The overnight pair of Vijay and Tendulkar first saw the important morning session to carry India to 224 for 2 in 61 overs. Temdulkar smashed two sixes off Nathan Hauritz to race away to his 49th Test hundred! Vijay was extremely lucky to have survived an easy run out early in the session with the fielder throw missing the stumps and the keeper’s gloves.
After lunch, Vijay was once again lucky not to get out, this time he got away from being plumb lbw to a Ben Hilfenhaus’ off cutter. The Chennai batsman eased himself after that and went after the spinner Nathan Hauritz to quickly move towards the nineties. Vijay was stuck for a long time on 99 and took ten deliveries to reach his maiden Test hundred! Amazingly Vijay also like Tendulkar did not take it easy after getting the hundred and both kept their heads down to take India to 314 for 2 in 91 overs. The second new ball was taken just an over before Tea.
In the final session, Australia could break the 3rd wicket partnership when a tired Murali Vijay edged his backfoot drive to the keeper off Johnson. In the same over, debutant Cheteshwar Pujara who was padded up for more than 90 overs got an unplayable short delivery by Johnson angled in from round the sticks which shockingly refused to bounce off the turf to have him plumb infront! Pujara could just get off the mark before that with a lovely square drive for a boundary.
After the double blow from Johnson, India climbed up the ladder again through a 61-run stand between Tendulkar and Raina. There was the wicket of Suresh Raina (32 from 43 balls with 5 fours) going down with about 30 minutes left in play when the left hander jumped out and dragged a slog off Michael Clarke to mid on. India finished the day at 435 for 5 in 122 overs maintaning a healthy run rate of 3.56.