Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Virender Sehwag Expectations for the win in Kanpur test

Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir
Virender Sehwag smack a reverberating century at the placid Green Park Stadium pitch here and promptly predicted a score upwards of 700 for the home side. "Once we have 700 or 800 on the board, we can put them under strain and go for a win," said Sehwag, who struck 131 and was coupled in an important 233-run stand with opening partner Gautam Gambhir, the second double-century stand between the two at the venue.

"I think the pitch will help spinners later on in the match and I am optimistic we can bag the 20 wickets needed for a win. We have done that long-ago, against Australia in Mohali last year, and we can do it again," said Sehwag. "As of now, this pitch looks as good for batting as Motera, but it is slightly slower and the ball skids on a little. I think we have done a good job of capitalizing batting on the first day as it may not be so easy batting on it towards the end," he added.

Sehwag said the opening pair's plan of seeing off the early overs had paid rich dividends. "I got an early chance but I decided to leave balls outside the off stump from then on. I knew it was a matter of seeing off some overs and was confident of knocking the spinners around for some runs, though we were not targeting any bowler as such," said the opener, who was all extol for Gambhir. "Gautam is in superb form and I told him early on to concentrate and get a fourth consecutive century in Tests and go on to set some kind of record. He once hit centuries in five consecutive Ranji Trophy matches, so he is used to this kind of run," reminded Sehwag.

Sehwag said he was not concerned at missing a 150-plus score after passing that figure in each of his previous 10 Test centuries. "I don't repent playing that shot against to the spin of Muralitharan. And 131 is not a small score," he said.

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