Mumbai Test: Batted with a much clear mindset, says Murali Vijay
India opener rates Wankhede ton higher after failing in last two Test matches
Murali Vijay pulls one en route his 136 against England on Day Three of the fourth Test at Wankhede on Saturday. Pic/Suresh Karkera
You don't let someone like Virat Kohli off the hook and survive. Adil Rashid failed to hold on to a return chance, when the batsman was on 68 when India were still 65 runs short of England's first innings score of 400.
But the Indian skipper went on to rake up his 15th Test hundred and guide the team to a healthy first innings score of 451-7 and a lead of 51 runs at close on Day Three of the fourth India-England Test at Wankhede Stadium on Saturday. Kohli was batting on 147 while Jayant Yadav was on 30 in their 87-run eighth wicket partnership.
Got the innings going
But before that, it was opener Murali Vijay who got the Indian innings going with his eighth Test hundred, his second in the series. He was also involved in a 107-run partnership for the second wicket with Cheteshwar Pujara and then went on to add 116 runs for the third wicket with Kohli.
Vijay got his hundred, thick-edging one to point and scampering home for a single when Moeen Ali was bowling to him with a packed on-side field. Vijay, in his nervous 90s or rather 99s, was playing everything with the turn, straight to the fielders. He again played one from Moeen for the turn, but there was none and got a thick outside edge to point and brought up his 100.
This knock was special for Vijay for more reasons than one. He got a hundred (126) in the series-opener at Rajkot, but his last three dismissals gave the opposition an opportunity to peek into his weakness of handling the rising ball. But here, he not only tackled the rising ball with authority, but also dominated the spinners with ease.
A special ton
"I would rate this hundred very highly because I started off well in this series but couldn't do well in couple of matches. I couldn't play the way I wanted to play. I was getting out too early. Here I came out in a much clearer mindset and tried to back my instincts and play."
About the rising ball issue, he said: "I did think about it because I was playing a lot of those balls which I should have left alone. I used the break in between the third and the fourth Test to work on it, but my basic game plan was to back my instinct and play the way I want to play. Even with the spinners, my game is to attack them."
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