Poetical is Cheteshwar Pujara’s batting on the 22 yards and so is what he speaks about cricket and his approach towards his game.
There is enough talk about how ‘ugly’ Pujara looks in the middle, there is enough talk about his turtle-like slow batting but neither him nor the people in love with the longest format of the game care about it. There is whole different level of satisfaction watching a purist like Pujara go about his business. His slow fifties are nothing but blissful. It’s like slowly churning out runs from the opposition while taking the game away from them.
The 33-year-old took as many as 11 blows on his body to stand tall for 211 balls on the final day of the decisive Gabba Test. He scored 56 runs, also giving youngsters like Shubman Gill and Rishabh Pant to express themselves in the middle.
There were moments when Pujara jumped in pain. There was also a time when one of the Australian commentators said that Pujara should use his bat to avoid getting hit, there was a pinch of mockery in that comment. However, they never knew about the plan the batsman who had hit more than 6,000 Tests runs and 18 hundreds had in place to destroy their home time.
Pujara has revealed the reason behind the numerous blows he took on his body and it is simple — He did not want to give catches to close-in fielders.
“I had a clear game plan, and the plan was to make sure not to lose any wicket in the first session, or too many wickets which will give them [Australia] the advantage moving into the second and third sessions, and fortunately we just lost one wicket and my plan was even if I do not get runs, just stick around and try and get set and accelerate in the second the third session,” he said.
“The pitch had variable bounce, from one end the ball was not rising much, and at times rising a bit more than what I was expecting. It was becoming very difficult to defend those balls with the bat. There was an option to defend with the bat, but I felt that was not a safe option,” revealed Pujara explaining why he chose to take the body blows – 11 of them precisely from the Aus quicks, “Because if the ball hits your gloves it could go to short leg, slips, gully, or I could get caught behind. So, I wanted to rule that option out and that is why I was taking the blows to the body. Getting hit on the helmet was not ideal, but I was not worried about it and the there reason for it I knew as long as I am there and not getting out, that’s fine”.
“A couple of blows were really painful, and one which hit me below the shoulder the second time was painful but the most painful was when I got hit on the finger. that was the second I got hit there. Before the Before the third test, during the practice session at the MCG, I was hit on the same finger and I was carrying a bit of bruise that,” Pujara said on YouTube channel Cricket Fables.
It might look ugly but I know what’s best for the team
Cheteshwar Pujara said that he has enough experience of Test and first-class cricket to know what is best for his team and looking ugly on the crease doesn’t bother him.
“While batting my goal is to make sure I do the right thing for the team, it might look ugly, it might look like I am not comfortable but I know what’s best for the team because I have played so many Test matches and been part of this team for so many years.
“And it is not just about the Test experience, it’s also about the First Class experience. I play for Saurashtra and my first-class games are more than 200 now, and I know this particular format. If the team is in trouble how to handle it and I try and do my best according to my knowledge and what suits my strength that can help the team,” Pujara added.
Courtesy – MSN