New Delhi: India fell short of England's first innings total by 49 runs, but a seemingly indestructible Murali Vijay and Cheteshwar Pujara broke some records en route to their 209-run stand for the second wicket.
In the backdrop of their hundreds and the subsequent rapturous celebrations, a record lost the prominence it deserved. With an average of 65.09, Vijay and Pujara have bettered the ones shared by the Indian legends like Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and Virender Sehwag, etc.
Vijay-Pujara's average is now the best among 13 India pairs with 2000 or more runs in Test cricket. Besides, they are also made up the only pair to have posted 2000 runs for India since 2010.
The pair also became the best for India in the last decade. Till date, they have put on 2081 runs in 32 innings, including six century stands and nine of 50-plus, with a best stand of 370 runs for the second wicket against Australia at Hyderabad in March 2013.
For the record, Ganguly and Tendulkar have produced 4173 runs at an average of 61.36 with 12 hundreds, while Dravid-Sehwag pair managed 3383 runs at 60.41 with 10 hundreds.
Mohammad Azharuddin and Tendulkar pair is fourth with 2385 runs at an average of 58.17, with nine tons. Mohinder Amarnath and Sunil Gavaskar partnership is ranked fifth with 2366 runs at an average of 55.02, with 10 hundreds.
At Day 4 stumps, England have taken a lead of 163 runs at Rajkot with one full day's play still left in the first match of the series.
Despite tons from Vijay (126) and Pujara (124), India were folded up for 488 runs to concede a 49-run lead to the visitors.
Here are the pair's top three stands before the Rajkot match:
1. 370 vs Australia at Hyderabad, 2013
2. 157 vs South Africa at Durban, 2013
3. 108 vs Australia at Delhi, 2013