cheteshwar pujara: My technique didn’t change but being fearless helped me enjoy the game
Cheteshwar Pujara, who is considered to be the backbone of Indian batting in Test matches, is happy that batting fearlessly has brought his momentum back and he will no longer put undue pressure on himself.
Pujara said that not scoring a Test century for the last three years is not a matter of concern for him as long as his 80 and 90 runs from his bat help the team win.
During the team’s practice session, when Pujara was asked whether attacking batting in the last series against England had an advantage for him, he said, “Yeah, I think so.” When it comes to performance the mindset was a bit different but when it comes to technology I don’t think there has been any major change in technology. I was a bit fearless, which helped.
He admitted that he used to put too much pressure on himself but things changed after his innings of 91 and 61 at Leeds and The Oval.
“You don’t need to put too much pressure on yourself and instead of worrying too much about what is happening just try and enjoy your game by going out on the field,” he said.
He said, ‘That was the mindset during the England series. The preparation has been good so far and the experience of playing in Indian conditions will help in the next few Test matches.
Pujara hasn’t scored a Test century since January 2019 but that’s not a problem for him.
He said, ‘As far as my century is concerned, it will happen when it happens. My job is to bat well for the team and it’s not like I’m not scoring runs. I am playing an innings of 80 or 90 runs. I am batting well and contributing for the team. I don’t care about my century. It is a matter of one innings.
Ajinkya Rahane, who captained the team in the Kanpur Test, has also failed to play big consistently for some time but Pujara believes he is just an innings away from a big score.
“He is a great player but there are times when a player goes through tough times and that is part of the game. So there will be ups and downs I am sure he is just an innings away from getting a big score. With a century or a big innings, he will find the rhythm.
Pujar is excited to play under the new coach of the Indian team, Rahul Dravid, as his technique is similar to that of the former India great.
He said, ‘I have worked with him during the A series, so we are all looking forward to his guidance. The amount of experience he has as a player and coach of the team will help.
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