India plans to bat till 4th day: Sehwag

The Indian opener says India hope to bat long enough to bat South Africa out of the game and then let spinners work their magic.

updated: April 15, 2008 12:13 IST
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India plans to bat till the fourth day and take a big first innings lead to win first Test against South Africa in Chennai, opener Virender Sehwag said.

That will allow skipper Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh to put the visitors under pressure as batting will not be easy in the third and fourth innings of the match, Sehwag predicted after the second day's play.

"Cracks will develop on the pitch on the fifth day. We will bat for next two days to try and get close to their score (540) to put pressure on them. It will be difficult for them to play against Anil (Kumble) and Harbhajan Singh," the Delhi batsman said.

The placid wicket and hot weather had done the bowlers few favours, he felt.

"Because of the heat, the bowlers have to work harder. People's expectations are very high and they feel that on such wickets India has Anil and Harbhajan and they will take wickets.

"As for the heat, we all have played here in the past too. Wherever you play in India during March, the conditions are the same. Ahmedabad will be the same and it is going to be much more difficult in Kanpur, where it will be dry heat," Sehwag said.

India had made a solid start with Sehwag and Wasim Jaffer putting on 82 for the unbroken first wicket.

"Jaffer is batting well. Of his five centuries so far, he has made two double hundreds. You cannot discount his abilities," he said.