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Page last updated at 12:45 GMT, Saturday, 20 December 2008

Swann delighted with wicket haul

Second Test, Mohali (day two, close):
India 453 v England

Dates: 19-23 December Start time: 0400 GMT (0330 GMT on Sunday)
Coverage: Test Match Special on BBC Radio 4 LW and BBC 5 Live Sports Extra, live text commentary on BBC Sport website, and live on Sky Sports 1

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Swann upbeat on England's chances

Graeme Swann highlighted the vital wickets of Gautam Gambhir and Rahul Dravid as England fought back on day two of the second Test with India.

Dravid and Gambhir's record second-wicket stand of 314 had set India on their way to a big total in Mohali.

However, Swann dismissed them both as India were eventually all out for 453.

"It was very tough with Dravid and Gambhir, but once we managed to break that partnership we had a great period where we got five wickets," he said.

"It's up to us now to bat well and see where we are tomorrow night."

By the end of the morning session India had reached a formidable 302-1, but England fought back impressively with Swann and Andrew Flintoff each claiming three wickets.

I have tried to avoid over-analysing. I didn't do anything differently and if anything, I just kept my nerve

Rahul Dravid
As well as the prize scalps of Dravid (136) and Gambhir (179), Swann was especially pleased to claim the wicket of Sachin Tendulkar.

Tendulkar masterminded India's victory in the first match with his 41st Test century, but the 29-year-old Nottinghamshire spinner trapped him lbw after he had posted just 11 runs.

"You can't deny people batting well and having a good partnership and they really did bat well," added Swann.

"It was a case of just getting back out there after lunch and seeing what we could muster.

TMS Close of Play - Second Test, day two

"The dispiriting thing about the partnership is when you think who's in next and it's Tendulkar, especially after last week.

"So to get him early was fantastic and for me personally to get him out, I was over the moon.

"I've always wanted to get the best batsmen in the world out and it's one to tell my grandchildren about."

England will set about chasing down India's total knowing only a big score will bring them seriously back into contention and Swann believes they have the pitch to do it.

"It's a very good pitch, there's a little bit of turn but it's not dynamic by any means.

"And there's not a great deal of pace in it - the pace Andrew Flintoff generated was amazing really because it's not a quick pitch.

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"It's still a good pitch so hopefully we are going to make the most of it over the next two days top post a big total."

Dravid's century was his 26th in Test cricket, but his first in 20 innings.

His composed knock was reward for the Indian management team who resisted the temptation to drop him down the order and he was relieved at his return to form.

"It is just nice to be contributing to the side," he said

"You don't feel nice if you are not contributing to the team as much as you can with the bat.

"I have tried to avoid over-analysing. I didn't do anything differently and if anything, I just kept my nerve."

Dravid praised Gambhir's performance, adding: "I hope it will turn out to be a match-winning partnership. The conditions were not easy and we tried to hang in there as long as we could.

"Gambhir batted beautifully and took a lot of pressure off me, especially on the first day when he scored at a quick pace and rotated the strike as well."

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see also
India duo leave England trailing
20 Dec 08 |  England
Jonathan Agnew column
20 Dec 08 |  England
England in India 2008
01 Dec 08 |  Cricket


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