Cheteshwar Pujara aims for further improvement ahead of Australia series
Cheteshwar Pujara, who scored over 400 runs in the five-Test series against England, is targeting an improved showing in the upcoming series against Australia.cricket Updated: Jan 11, 2017 17:01 IST
Wiser after learning from his mistakes, India’s specialist Test batsman Cheteshwar Pujara has promised to unleash an improved version of himself in what is expected to be a hard-fought series against Australia next month.
“I would look to continue the same form. Probably try and do even better than whatever I did against New Zealand and England. I have learnt from the mistakes which I did during these series and continue the good things which I have done in the previous two series,” Pujara told reporters here talking about the four-Test series that will get underway from February 23.
“Australia will be obviously challenging but we are playing as a team (and) have done well against New Zealand and England, particularly England was a tough team to beat, and we were playing a five Test match series, which is always tough. So the way we played in the last year, we should continue doing the same thing.
He was speaking on the sidelines of the 13th D Y Patil Twenty20 Cup in neighbouring Navi Mumbai where he plays for Indian Oil.
Asked to rate his performance in the last few months, Pujara said expectation from him is always a three-figure knock.
- Cheteshwar Pujara scored over 400 runs, including two tons in the England series
- Cheteshwar Pujara scored 419 runs at an average of 83 when Australia came to India in 2013
- Australia will play four Tests in India starting from February 23
“It depends a lot (on the mindset). And I don’t think there was anything wrong with my technique or strike rate when I didn’t perform to the potential,” he said. “Probably people have high expectations because I am known to score double hundreds. So when I score a 50 or 80 runs, no one notices it, sometimes even the 80 runs is helpful for the team’s success. But people always expect me to sore big runs, hundreds or double hundreds,” said Pujara, who has played 43 Tests for India.
“There was a time when I didn’t perform to what I was expected to but that phase is over now. I am back in form, I did well against New Zealand and England, so both the Test series went well. Even the shorter format of this game, I did well in a few T20 games here and whatever games I have played this year, I have performed well. I am happy with the way things are going,” he added.
India thrashed England 4-0 the five-Test series last year. Asked how difficult it was to beat England, Pujara said that from a player’s perspective, it was a challenging series.
“They (England) started off well in Rajkot, we made a very good comeback and then from second Test match onwards we were in command. Though they were playing good cricket, we played better cricket than them and that was the reason (why) we were successful,” he said.
“All in all we played as a team, our fast bowlers also picked up wickets when needed and that was the reason we were successful,” added the Saurashtra player.