Gambhir, VVS guide India to draw in 2nd Test

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> With some timely performances by Gambhir (137), Dravid (62), Tendulkar (64) and Laxman (124*), India scored 476/4 in the 2nd innings to draw 2nd Test.

Updated: March 30, 2009 08:58 IST
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New Delhi:

With some timely performances by Gautam Gambhir (137), Rahul Dravid (62), Sachin Tendulkar (64) and VVS Laxman (124*), India scored 476/4 in the 2nd innings to draw 2nd Test against the Kiwis. Both the captains agreed to call off the day, as they saw no possible result coming out. India's savior came in the form of Gambhir who batted for almost 11 hours to save the Test match for his side.

Jesse Ryder was declared Man of the Match for his outstanding double century in New Zealand's first innings. New Zealand scored 619/9 and declared their first innings whereas, India managed to pile up only 305 and the batting line-up crumbled. They were forced to follow on and batted till last day to manage 476/4, which proved to be sufficient to draw the Napier Test.

With an overnight total of 252/2, Gambhir and Tendulkar resumed batting in the morning as they looked determined to play solid knocks to take India out of danger. The tourists then trailed by 62 runs.

Kiwi pacer Chris Martin initiated the proceedings for his side. An early breakthrough for the hosts came in the form of Tendulkar (64) in as early as the fifth over of the day, when he was caught by McCullum off Martin. VVS Laxman came in next to partner focused Gambhir.

As expected, Laxman played a fine innings and supported Gambhir well. Like always, he had the composure and calmness of an experienced Test batsman and it reflected in his batting. Both the batsmen took India's score to 306/3 at lunch and were only 8 runs behind Kiwi total.

The classy batsman stitched 53 runs off 136 balls while on the other end, Gambhir enjoyed a second life when he had earlier survived a dismissal when O'Brien dropped a dolly from him.

The Gambhir party ended when he was caught plumb by Jeeten Patel on 137 runs. He played 436 balls and stayed at the crease for 642 minutes to deprive New Zealand the Test win. India then stood at 356/4 and had taken a lead by 20 runs.

Yuvraj Singh walked in then to form a pair with Laxman almost at the stroke of tea and visitors' scoreboard then showed 397/4, leading by 83 runs.

And then it was Hyderabad player, who by his charismatic performance raised 14th Test century of his career in the need of the hour.

Yuvraj kept the momentum and answered his critics by 6th Test fifty of his career that came in soon after Laxman's refined hundred. The stylish left-hander came back in form with a half-century on just 51 deliveries, looking as good as an ODI knock. The Laxman-Yuvraj partnership of 100 runs came in just 86 balls.

And as the play seemed to get stagnant and no possible result could be seen, both the skippers - Sehwag and Vettori, decided to call off the day when India was on 476/4.

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