At 2.31pm, on a hot Mohali Friday, Sachin Tendulkar steered Peter Siddle towards the third-man boundary for three runs to break Brian Lara‘s record for most Test runs. The record stood for nearly two years after Lara played his final Test and it was inevitable that Tendulkar would eventually break it.
This also brought an end to the soap-opera-type frenzied anticipation for the record. Tendulkar was expected to overtake Lara in Sri Lanka recently, but he endured a poor series with the bat, scoring just 95 runs in three Tests. Then in the series-opener in Bangalore, during a stupendous match-saving effort in the second innings, it seemed he would get to the record, but he gifted his wicket when 15 short.
Coincidentally, Lara too achieved the world record against Australia, when he went past Allan Border’s tally of 11,174 runs during the Adelaide Test in 2005. They remain the only three players to cross the 11,000-run mark in Tests. Though it is uncertain how long Tendulkar will prolong his Test career – which has lasted 19 years – the two players who stand the best chance of beating his eventual tally are Rahul Dravid (10,302) and Ponting (10,239).