Tendulkar''s blistering ton takes India to 338 all out

Bangalore, Feb 27 (PTI) Sachin Tendulkar smashed a recordfifth World Cup century with a breath-taking display ofstrokeplay as India rattled up an imposing 338 all out intheir group-B league match against England here today.

The 37-year-old Tendulkar (120) slammed his fifth WorldCup century, the highest by any cricketer in the mega event,to provide the sparks in a scintillating Indian battingdisplay at the jam-packed Chinnaswamy stadium.

Apart from Tendulkar''s 47th ODI century, Gautam Gambhir(51), Yuvraj Singh (58) and Virender Sehwag (35) were theother notable scorers as the Indians virtually tore theEnglish batting attack to shreds to leave the visitors with astiff asking rate of 6.78. It was India''s highest World Cuptotal against England.

Pacer Tim Bresnan was the pick of the England bowlerswith 5/48 but none of the other bowlers could make much of animpression.

It was vintage stuff by Tendulkar as he unleashed 10boundaries and five sixes in his 115-ball 120 to lay theplatform for the Indian onslaught.

Tendulkar''s milestone moment came in the 35th over whenhe glanced Tin Bresnan to the boundary to record his fifthWorld Cup century, surpassing former India captain SouravGanguly, current Australia captain Ricky Ponting and hisformer teammate Mark Waugh who had four hundreds to theircredit.

Electing to bat first, the Indian innings began on atentative note but the runs started flowing once the batsmencame to terms with the pace and bounce of the Chinnaswamytrack.

Opener Virender Sehwag had a reprieve in the very firstball of the innings as Graeme Swann dropped a difficult chancein the second slip off James Anderson.

The dashing opener tried to push Anderson''s outgoingdelivery and got a thick edge but Swann could not latch on tothe sharp chance.

Sehwag had two more close shaves in an eventful firstover as he struggled to time the ball well. But he began tolook a little more comfortable against paceman Ajmal Shahzadas he spanked him to the boundary in his first ball.

Sehwag attacked Anderson by smashing him to the pointboundary while Tendulkar also tried to force the pace ofscoring by going for his strokes.

Although the ball was not coming on to the bat quicklyenough in the initial stages, Sehwag played with customaryflourish and picked up Anderson for special treatment byclobbering him for 11 runs in one over. More PTI RE MRM

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