India v England, 2nd Test, Mumbai, 3rd day November 25, 2012

Tendulkar's star on the wane

ESPNcricinfo presents the plays of the day from the third day in Mumbai

Wicket of the day
Might this have been Sachin Tendulkar's final Test innings in Mumbai? There was an audible gasp of shock as Tendulkar was trapped leg before by a Monty Panesar delivery that did not spin and may well have been a bit quicker. It was the second time in the match that Panesar had claimed his wicket and sustained a grim run of form for the 39-year-old. Tendulkar has now not reached 20 in his last six Test innings and, as he returned to the pavilion, it was hard to avoid the feeling that, after a career in which he has defeated all opponents, he may have finally met a foe he cannot beat: time.

Near miss of the day
Had R Ashwin produced a direct hit, or even a half decent throw, Alastair Cook would have been run out for 90 in just the third over of the morning session. Responding to an optimistic call for a single from Kevin Pietersen, Cook was well short of his ground. As it was, Ashwin threw wide and allowed the England pair to pick-up an overthrow.

Milestone of the day #1
A flowing drive through extra-cover for four off Harbhajan Singh was a suitably classy way for Alastair Cook to reach the 22nd century of his Test career. Not only did that mean he had scored four centuries in four successive Tests as captain - a feat that no-one has previously achieved - but that, aged just 27, he joined Wally Hammond, Geoffrey Boycott and Colin Cowdrey as the record century scorer for England in Test cricket.

Milestone of the day #2
Cook was soon joined on the landmark figure by Kevin Pietersen. Just as Cook had, Pietersen reached his milestone with a suitably characteristic stroke: a reverse sweep off Harbhajan that went for four. Whatever the controversies that marred the end of the South Africa series, Pietersen has now produced three match-shaping Test centuries in his last eight Tests.

Mix-up of the day
Matt Prior one again looked in fine form until, sent back by Stuart Broad, his desperate dive to recover his ground was beaten by a good pick-up and throw from MS Dhoni. There had never been much chance of a run: the ball had only travelled a few yards into the off side as the delivery, from Ashwin, thudded into Prior's pads and the bowler appealed for lbw. It was a key moment, too. Prior's departure precipitated a collapse and, with England losing their last four wickets for just seven runs, India were able to restrict the first innings deficit to 86. It might have been considerably more.

Controversy of the day
Jonny Bairstow was caught at silly point by Gautam Gambhir as he tried to turn one spinning across him into the leg side. But replays showed the ball, while being juggled by Gambhir, had touched the visor of his helmet and should, therefore, have not been declared a fair. Perhaps neither Bairstow nor Gambhir noticed the ball had touched the helmet, or perhaps neither of them were fully aware of the intricacies of the laws, but neither they, nor the umpires, noticed anything untoward. But, with Bairstow's wicket also bringing the lunch* interval, England team director Andy Flower, approached the match referee and the umpires. They replied that, as Bairstow had left the playing area and tea had been called, the only way the decision could be reversed was if the India captain, MS Dhoni, rescinded his appeal. Dhoni subsequently declined to do so.

*19:13GMT, November 25: The article had previously said tea interval. This has been corrected.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on November 26, 2012, 5:33 GMT

    If Tendulkar do not want to retire, the selectors should be bold enough to drive him away. He may be a great playersee, but throughout his carrier, how many times he helped India when the team was in touble. What is his record in the second innings? No body says but Gavaskar as a test player had much better record than Tendulkar. He faced the great and firing first bolowers like Roberts, Holding, Garner, Marshal, Lily, Tomson, Snow and others and without helmet. The time has come when the selectors must say good bye to him, there are lots of young talents are waiting.

  • Hariharan on November 26, 2012, 4:54 GMT

    I Just loved the way our author has put it, "he has defeated all opponents, he may have finally met a foe he cannot beat: time." Just shows the fact that the great has lost the magic he has had in him. I guess its time for him to move on and take up a career with Team India, he still has plenty to offer as a batting coach with his experience and expertise being invaluable. He says he will quit when he feels the passion has been lost. I guess its not him to decide, If his performance is not good enough, he should be shown the door many youngsters are waiting in the wings to jump at the chance and are hungry to prove themselves into the national team. Sachin tendulkar is Depriving these youngsters the chance they deserve. Sandeep Patil Rightfully dropped Raina, but did not have the balls to drop Tendulkar?? Why, its a question he himself has to introspect. Follow the Aussie way if you want Team India to be a winning team.Thanks for the memories sachin, I guess its time you moved on..!!

  • Radhe Shyam on November 26, 2012, 4:34 GMT

    What's wrong if SRT is still playing to earn the multi core endorsments? May be scoring only six 50plus scores in his last 28 innings covering 15 tests at an average of 32.74. When the goal is money it's useless to talk of team or country. As he says he will continue playing till he ENJOYS it(read endorsements). He is just above avery thing that matters in Indian Cricket.

  • Harish on November 26, 2012, 4:26 GMT

    @chanakyas : By your logic, none can be criticised. A chef cannot be crticised, as I can't cook. A film director can't be criticised as I can't direct a film. And yes, I do sit on my bum and see a match. Havn't mastered the art of sitting on my head and seeing it.

  • Harish on November 26, 2012, 4:04 GMT

    @LankaGod : Works both ways. We Indians were appalled at the way Jayasuriya was treated at certain phases. And Jayasuriya was far better and result oriented than Sachin in ODIs. He could walk into any ODI team on the strength of his bowling alone. SRT is plain selfish and preventing a youngster from being groomed in a home series.

  • jaswanth reddy on November 26, 2012, 4:02 GMT

    he will be back to his form in kolkata as DADA said

  • Dummy4 on November 26, 2012, 4:02 GMT

    There is one direct relationship between age and cricket and that i feel is the reaction time. With experience and class you practically know how to play a particular delivery from a bowler, but reaction time ain't the same any more. Bat comes down slower, slow reaction to counter late movements of the ball, and ball finds the gaps b/w bat and pad or becomes a victim of LBW's.. He is my favourite by far since the day i first met and got his autograph back in 92.. Good luck Sachin in answering back your critics before you hang your boots..!!!

  • Dummy4 on November 26, 2012, 3:56 GMT

    sadly, I agree with most people on here - I think its time for one of the game's all-time greats to hang up his pads. Gavaskar is wrong - it is definitely NOT up to Sachin to make the call on his own retirement; but will the selectors be bold enough to make the decision? I hope so. interestingly, Ponting and Federer, 2 other sporting greats are also winding down at the same time. Sachin has been at the top for longer than either of them, but time has finally caught up with him.

  • abdul mannan on November 26, 2012, 3:37 GMT

    I hope Tendulkar see's the writing on the wall for him.It's about time.Time is exactly what that has caught up with him.And by being stubborn he is doing great disservice to the game which has given him so much. He is being an impediment to the careers of young players like Manoj tiwary,Raina and Rohit sharma.The last named is probably the most talented of the lot.Logically it should be Tiwary first then Raina and ofcourse Ajinkya rahane and Unmukt chand. Tendulkar has been a great player,perhaps the greatest after Vivian richards and I am sure it will be while before we see any body like him. Cricket will surely produce someone like him or may be even better. Selectors don't have the guts to ask to Ten to leave.Ten will have to make a call for the sake of cricket.

  • Ravi on November 26, 2012, 3:37 GMT

    @Si Baker: Agree completely. It's the saddest part. It pains to see people using such harsh words against him when probably they were the ones jumping with joy on countless occasions in the past when the master was at his dominant best. Like many great sportsmen he has failed to judge the perfect time to retire

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