Still possible to force result: Dravid

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Rahul Dravid says getting to 10,000 Test runs was difficult. He says India can still get a result out of the Chennai Test against South Africa.

Updated: April 15, 2008 12:15 IST
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The events on the fourth day may have dealt a blow for India's chances of taking a lead in the Test series against South Africa, but seasoned batsman Rahul Dravid thinks there is still a chance of forcing a result in the first Test.

India squandered a commanding position at the start of the day and by stumps, the Proteas had not only erased the first innings deficit of 87, but had gone in front by 44.

But Dravid was optimistic that all was not lost yet.

"There is still a chance of a result. I would rather be in our dressing room than in theirs (South African). But it will require a big effort from the bowlers tomorrow," the former skipper, who completed 10,000 runs and his 25th Test hundred in his knock of 111, said.

The Indians will need to get breakthroughs early on the final day, Dravid felt.

"The first session on Sunday will be crucial. We have two quality spinners (Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh). If we can get a few early wickets, it will not be easy for a new batsman coming in."

Dravid added 268 runs for the second wicket with Virender Sehwag (319) and said it was a privilege to watch such a high-class innings from the other end.

"It was an exceptional and breathtaking innings. Only he could have played such an innings. The range of shots was special - 360 degrees round the wicket.

"The pace at which he scored was amazing. It was like watching a highlights package. At times, it was difficult to keep my emotions in check," he said.

On rating his 25th ton, Dravid said, "It is hard to place it. I do not rate any of my hundreds but I place the hundreds which end up in the team winning the match."

"It is a proud moment. I grew up dreaming to play for India. Looking back, I feel that I have exceeded my own expectations and that of others. To do it in Chennai with my parents and family watching is great," he said.

But Dravid said achieving the 10,000 milestone in one-day internationals was also a cherished feat.

"Getting 10,000-plus runs in one-day matches is special. 'Starting out as a particular kind of player, I have to adapt learning different skills, playing in different batting slots and adapted to the shorter version too. That gave me satisfaction as I was able to accomplish all that.

"Achieving this in Test cricket is much more difficult. The runs are the toughest to get in Test cricket. I will cherish my 10,000-plus in Test cricket," Dravid added.

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