‘Come on buddy. One more over’: How VVS Laxman and Rahul Dravid batted entire day against Australia in 2001
The epic 331-run stand between Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman in the 2001 Eden Garden Test against Australia took the Sourav Ganguly-led side from the brink of defeat to a miraculous win. Dravid and Laxman were in the middle when India were asked to follow-on, and were four wickets down. Both Dravid and Rahul went on to bat the entire 90 overs on Day 4 - with the former scoring 180 runs and the latter registering 283. India declared with a mammoth 657/7, setting Australia a stiff total of 384 runs to chase on the final day.
Australia lost seven wickets for 46 runs in the final session of the final day as India won a memorable encounter. Speaking in an episode of Star Sports’ ‘Kolkata 2001-Dravid & Laxman Special’ chat show, Laxman recalled how the pair went on to motivate each other despite struggling in the middle.
“All of us took a lot of pride playing for the country, and we always wanted to do well, especially in tough situations, but not once did Rahul, during that entire partnership we had, show a glimpse of disappointment. He was showing that fight which we always see from Rahul,” VVS Laxman said.
“After every over, we used to fist pump and the only thing that we were discussing, and telling each other was, ‘Come on buddy. One more over’. That was something that was great learning for both of us because when you are facing a big challenge, you cannot think about the bigger picture,” he further recalled.
“You have to focus on achieving the smaller goals. The easiest goal for us to achieve was to give merit to each and every ball you’re facing and encourage your partner that we got to do this for our country. Rahul was down with a viral fever, I was struggling with my back and all we were telling each other was, ‘One more over.’ And as it turned out, we batted the entire 90 overs on the 4th day,” Laxman added.