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Key performer – Tim Southee
If this Test match is still in a balance, it is due to Southee. When New Zealand took the second new ball, India had two well-settled batsmen in Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni and they were threatening to build a lead. He used the new ball well to get rid of both of them and two others to end up with seven for the innings.
One thing I’d have changed about the day
There was a felicitation for VVS Laxman and Sunil Joshi by the KSCA during the tea interval. The event took place on the ground near the dressing room. Fans like me at the far end could not make out anything. The KSCA could have made arrangements to show the event on the big screen. Also, they can improve the PA system by installing speakers in all the stands.
Player watch – Sachin Tendulkar
Tendulkar was fielding at long-on for James Franklin (about 20 metres to my right). The fans understandably kept calling out his name. He obliged a couple of times with a hand wave. The partnership between Franklin and Kruger van Wyk grew and the crowd went a bit quiet. Sachin turned around and gestured as if to ask, “Are you guys sleeping? Make some noise.” Needless to say, the stand erupted.
Shot of the day – Zaheer Khan
Zaheer is not known to hang around much. The first ball he faced, he backed away a little and smashed a full one over long-on for a beautiful six. Although there were many nice looking shots from top-order batsmen, this one is still fresh in my mind.
Ball of the day – Ashwin to Southee
It was late in the evening and the Indian spinners had the New Zealand team in all sorts of trouble. Ashwin flighted one just outside the Southee’s off stump. Southee went for a booming drive and to Ashwin and my delight the ball turned, went through the gate and hit leg and middle.