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January 5, 2009
Wasim Jaffer's second career triple-hundred and his 227-run stand with Sachin Tendulkar put Mumbai on top in a match that, thanks to the dead wicket, will probably be decided on first-innings lead. With six wickets falling in 180 overs so far, it is unlikely Mumbai's bowlers will be able to dismiss Saurashtra twice and they will look to bat the opposition out of the match. If Saurashtra don't complete their first innings, the net run-rate of all their previous games will decide which team goes through to the final.
Jaffer brought up his second double-hundred of this season early in the day. He was joined by Tendulkar at the fall of Ajinkya Rahane - who looked out of touch and often mistimed the ball - to offspinner Kamlesh Makvana.
Tendulkar went on the attack immediately, hitting Makvana for a six over long-on and a four past backward point. He got to his fifty (off 68 balls) with a boundary off Rakesh Dhruv to extra cover and followed it up two balls later with a lofted boundary to wide mid-off. In the first over after lunch, Tendulkar charged down the track and hit Makvana over long-on for a six.
Tendulkar repeated the shot in Makvana's next over, which prompted the Saurashtra captain to pull him out of the attack. Rakesh Dhruv, who replaced him, didn't fare better - Tendulkar, who was dropped just before, launched him for a six over long-on before cutting him past point for a four. He got to his century with a four driven through mid-on and retired at 122.
Jaffer meanwhile ticked along at a comfortable pace, content to let Tendulkar keep majority of the strike. He never looked troubled by the bowling, which was defensive through the day. He hit 27 fours in his 301, repeatedly walking across and down the wicket to deal with the outside-off line of the seamers. Mumbai went into a shell after Jaffer's fall and lost a few wickets in the last session.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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