SYDNEY, Jan 3 (IANS): Sachin Tendulkar was denied his 100th international century by young fast bowler James Pattinson while India limped to 178 for eight in the first innings at tea against Australia on the first day of the 100th cricket Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) here Tuesday.
Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was batting on 44 while Ben Hilfenhaus removed Ravichandran Ashwin (20) and Zaheer Khan in consecutive deliveries before the break to give himself a chance of claiming his maiden Test hat-trick after the resumption of play. The Test is the second of the series.
Pattinson proved again that he is a star of the future, picking up the valuable wickets of opener Gautam Gambhir - off the third ball of the morning - and Virender Sehwag (30), V.V.S Laxman (2) and Tendulkar (41).
Dhoni won the toss and elected to bat but the team suffered a massive blow when Pattinson dismissed opener Gambhir without a run being posted. Gambhir was caught at first slip by Australian skipper Michael Clarke.
India were on the back foot early at 2-30 after Dravid was caught at short leg by Ed Cowan off Peter Siddle.
Sehwag, who was dropped by Ricky Ponting off Hilfenhaus in the first over after drinks on 23, was dismissed for 30 while poking at an away delivery from Pattinson to wicketkeeper Brad Haddin. Laxman followed four runs later caught by Marsh.
Tendulkar received a huge cheer as he walked to the wicket. The cricketing world was eagerly waiting for the batting maestro to score his 100th international century on the historic occasion of the 100th Test match at the SCG.
India had lost four wickets in the first session, while Virat Kohli (23) was dismissed about half an hour after lunch. Kohli was caught behind off Siddle.
Tendulkar and Dhoni's repair act yielded just 28 runs and Pattinson removed the batting great, who was played on off an inside edge. Dhoni then added crucial 54 runs for the sixth wicket with Ashwin that gave the innings some respectability.