Murali Vijay anchors India reply with eighth Test century, third vs England
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Murali Vijay anchors India reply with eighth Test century, third vs England

Murali Vijay struck his eighth hundred as India made steady progress towards England’s first-innings total of 400 on the third morning of the fourth Test at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday

cricket Updated: Dec 10, 2016 12:56 IST
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Murali Vijay scored his eighth Test hundred and third against England on day 3 of the fourth Test at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium.(Reuters)

Batting with supreme confidence and showing great application, Murali Vijay scored his second hundred of the series to anchor India’s first innings in their reply to England’s 400. (LIVE UPDATES)

Murali Vijay hardly put a foot wrong on way to his eighth century of his career. At lunch, he is batting on 124 (9 fours, 3 sixes).

The Tamil Nadu batsman became only the third Indian opener to score a hundred at the Wankhede Stadium after Sunil Gavaskar and Virender Sehwag. Gavaskar has five here and Sehwag had scored his only century against West Indies in 2002.

Overnight 70 not out, Vijay was unfazed by the early dismissal of his partner Cheteshwar Pujara on the second ball of the day. Initially, he was content to play second fiddle to Virat Kohli, but pounced on the opportunity whenever the England bowlers erred in line or length.

Murali Vijay celebrates his century on day 3 of the fourth Test match between India and England at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai on Saturday (BCCI)

Vijay was out after lunch for 136, caught and bowled by leg-spinner Adil Rashid. He drove a fuller length delivery back to bowler, the power in the stroke missing because he failed to middle the ball.

Murali Vijay’s first boundary hit of the morning was a glorious straight six off Moeen Ali, his third of the innings. Then, he creamed a four through the covers off Ben Stokes to march into the nineties. Vijay completed his hundred with a single to backward point off Moeen Ali.

Till lunch, he has added 101 runs in 184 balls with Kohli to help India reach 247 for two. The home team has cut the deficit to 153 runs with eight wickets in hand.

The feature of Vijay’s innings was the way he responded to the challenge of playing the short ball, for which he had received criticism in the last two Tests. At the Wankhede, he handled the short ball with panache. At Rajkot, Vijay had scored 126.

First Published: Dec 10, 2016 12:56 IST