Sachin Tendulkar notched up his fourth consecutive Test ton and Virender Sehwag cracked 165 as India relied on the sheer class of the experienced duo to take control of the second and final cricket Test against South Africa in Kolkata on Monday.
After polishing off South Africa's first innings at 296, the hosts rode on Tendulkar's 47th ton and Sehwag's 19th century to reach 342 for five at close on the second day which saw the home team lose three key wickets in quick succession at the fag end.
At stumps on an eventful day, VVS Laxman (9) and night watchman Amit Mishra (1) were at the crease with India having taken a lead of 46 runs. They will now look to take a substantial first innings lead and push to level the series 1-1 in the remaining three days.
The vociferous crowd at the Eden Gardens was treated to a stunning exhibition of strokeplay by the two Indian masters as they put on a 249-run partnership for the third wicket to torment the South Africans, who need to win the match to dislodge India from the number one position in the Test rankings.
But both Sehwag and Tendulkar (106) fell at the fag end of the day alongwith S Badrinath to allow the visitors to claw back into the game to some extent.