Ahmedabad: It was 23 months and 30 innings in the making, but when Virender Sehwag lofted Graeme Swann over mid-on to bring up his 23rd Test hundred, it had the kind of impact India so badly missed. The manner in which Sehwag batted, as much as the runs he scored, did the dual job of restoring confidence in the Indian camp and putting the pressure squarely on England's bowlers.
Over the last two years, India's results, especially overseas, have slipped, and it's perhaps no coincidence that Sehwag did not go on to make it count in the same period. Grappling with injury, Sehwag never looked out of form, but given how early he often fell, it was hard to say just what was on his mind.
On the day, though, there was a method to Sehwag's approach, and it showed. "I have to thank DJ (CKM Dhananjay), our video analyst. He gave me videos of my last 10 matches and whenever I played 10 overs quietly I scored a big hundred," said Sehwag, soon after the first day's play. "We were watching videos last night till 11pm. I realised that if I played the new ball cautiously it's good for me and good for the team. I'm very pleased that Gautam (Gambhir) also scored runs and we gave a very good start to the team. It's a good sign."