Pujara, Ashwin steady India after Panesar heroics
MUMBAI: Cheteshwar Pujara and Ravichandran Ashwin steadied India after an initial stumble to close the day at 266 for six on the first day of the second Test against England on Friday at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
Pujara, who had scored a double century in the first Test in Ahmedabad, starred again with a sublime innings which saw him score an unbeaten 114 off 279 balls.
Ashwin gave him support to produce a 97-run partnership for the seventh wicket after an initial stumble saw the hosts at 119-5.
Monty Panesar, who was excluded from the England squad in the first Test, caused most of the damage as he took four wickets while the other two were taken by James Anderson and Graeme Swann.
India’s Virender Sehwag, playing in his 100th Test match, could hardly make an impression before he was bowled by Panesar after scoring 30 runs. Sachin Tendulkar fell in a similar manner as Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni were caught out off Panesar.
Anderson dismissed Gautam Gambhir as Swann bowled Yuvraj Singh for a duck.
Ashwin praised Pujara’s batting, saying it would have been a shame if he had not scored a century.
“I thought it was a brilliant knock. The amount of time he trusted his defense and kept on defending was brilliant. He eased the nerves as he batted on, defending beautifully. I thought it was a very well paced knock and it would have been a shame if he had not got a hundred,” said Ashwin.