Is Sachin back amongst runs?
Sachin Tendulkar became the fourth cricketer to surpass 9,000 Test runs when he reached 36 on the opening day of the fourth Test.india Updated: Jan 02, 2004 21:04 IST
Sachin Tendulkar became only the fourth cricketer to surpass 9,000 Test runs when he crafted a confidence-building half century Friday on the opening day of the fourth Test between India and Australia.
Tendulkar had scored only 82 runs in the three previous matches against Australia and started his 111th Test on 8,964 runs. He reached 9,000 with a single off paceman Jason Gillespie to take his total to 36 and remained unbeaten 73 as India reached stumps at 284 for three.
His progress to the milestone was slow in 2003. The usually prolific right-hander scored only 153 runs in five Tests at an average of 17 after undergoing surgery to repair damage in his left hand.
But Indian opener Akash Chopra, who was bowled for 45 by Brett Lee on Friday, was convinced Tendulkar had broken the shackles and the Australians would take the brunt of his return to form.
"Definitely, he makes up for his failures with a huge score, he's done it in the past and he's batting tremendously well on 73, so hopefully he'll have a very good score tomorrow," Chopra said.
Australian coach John Buchanan said Tendulkar was due to make a big score and his innings wouldn't distract the Australians.
"When you're averaging close to 60 and when you've been missing out for five or six innings, the law of averages suggests there's a big innings somewhere in the mix," said Buchanan.
"He's managed to stay at the crease longer than in previous innings in this series and has been able to accumulate runs, but in his own mind he won't say he's accumulated them in the best fashion."
The 30-year-old Tendulkar faced 156 balls in 202 minutes and hit 12 boundaries. He reached his 37th Test 50 with a three off Australian captain Stephen Waugh, one of three men ahead of him on the all-time scoring list.
Former Australian skipper Allan Border leads the standings with 11,174 Test runs, followed by Waugh, who had 10,807 going into his 168th Test, and India's Sunil Gavaskar, who scored 10,122 runs in 125 Tests.