Brendon McCullum joined Flynn at the crease to reach up to the set total by the tourists and set a decent lead to save the match for their side. But Harbhajan struck for the third time to cut short Flynn’s outing through Gambhir’s catch at forward short-leg. His 67 runs gave a sense of hope to beleaguered Kiwis which were soon diminished by the mighty Indians.
New Zealand struggled at 161 for 7 when skipper Daniel Vettori came in to revive Kiwi innings. He made 21 runs and gifted another Kiwi wicket to Harbhajan off Dhoni. Ian O’Brien entered next to partner McCullum and both played safe on 5 and 30 when New Zealand were 216/8 at tea.
O’Brien (14) stuck around for a while, supported McCullum well, who raised his 13th half-century of his Test career in the last session, and made his way out. It was yet again, Harbhajan who did the honors for India, clinching sixth wicket of the Test match.
McCullum (84) looked set to smash his third Test century but part-time spinner Yuvraj Singh spoiled the party with the help of Laxman at short fine-leg. 38-run lead was all the Kiwis could manage and India were virtually set for the first Test win since the Auckland Test in 1976.
India were all out for 520 runs with a lead of 241 runs. Tendulkar led Indian batting’s motivated performance. While three batsmen made half-centuries, Sachin raised a well-crafted hundred.