Tendulkar hails special performance

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The Independent Online

Sachin Tendulkar described India's victory against England today as "very special" after his century guided them to the fourth-highest run chase in Test history.

Tendulkar came to the crease in just the third over the day, but showed his class to pace India's charge towards their victory target of 387, bringing up his 41st Test century with the winning boundary midway through the evening session.



He told Sky Sports 1: "This becomes a very, very special victory.



"To score 387 is something (to be proud of) on a track where the ball is bouncing and jumping at the end.



"I think this is a very, very important hundred because I always say if the team wins then the hundred becomes very special and today this hundred is very important."



Tendulkar, who combined with Yuvraj Singh for a unbeaten 163-run stand to clinch the six-wicket win, added: "The gameplan was to wait for opportunities to score runs because you can't afford to get bogged down.



"It was the kind of wicket where the bounce meant you could always play shots, we looked to put the bad balls away."



Yuvraj admitted he had relied on Tendulkar's experience as he remained unbeaten on 85.



"Sachin said to play your natural game because obviously he has played more Test match cricket than me," he said.



"It is a dream come true for me. I dreamed one day I'm going to win a Test match alongside him and now I have done that."

England captain Kevin Pietersen admitted losing was hard to take after getting into a winning position.

"It is a very, very bitter pill to swallow in our dressing room," he said on Sky Sports 1.



"I think after day one if we said we'd defend 250 on the final day we would have taken that.



"Sehwag obviously started the innings fantastically well last night and then the Little Master from Mumbai (Tendulkar) came in.



"As a skipper and a bowling unit you try and set a field to a magician like that and it is pretty difficult.



"Our boys tried our hearts out. We didn't come here just to compete, we wanted to win and we thought we were in a pretty good position to do that, but unfortunately we got pipped today."

India captain MS Dhoni paid tribute to the efforts of man of the match Virender Sehwag, who hit a blistering 83 from 68 balls yesterday to put India on course for their unlikely win.

Dhoni said: "We raised our standards and do not forget the playmaker in Virender Sehwag, without his innings we would have been defending this Test match.



"His innings gave Sachin and Yuvraj the opportunity to win. Sachin was brilliant and Yuvraj amazing, because there was pressure."



Dhoni admitted his side were second best for most of the opening three days but felt they hit back superbly.



He added: "It was important to play the next two days with a lot of intensity. In those two days, the amount of sessions we have won, that is why we have won this Test match.



"We have seen over the years in India, on the fourth and fifth day, the game changes a lot and it changes very quickly."





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