Rishabh Pant (L) and Cheteshwar Pujara raised a century stand for India's fifth wicket. (BCCI)
Rishabh Pant (L) and Cheteshwar Pujara raised a century stand for India's fifth wicket. (BCCI)

'He has to learn a few more things, has to put the team in commanding position': Pujara after Pant gets out on 91

  • India vs England: India’s Cheteshwar Pujara pointed out that Rishabh Pant needs to see the bigger picture and play as per situation to get the team in a better position.
By hindustantimes.com, New Delhi
UPDATED ON FEB 08, 2021 08:29 AM IST

Although he was impressed with Rishabh Pant’s blazing knock of 91 against England in Chennai, India’s Cheteshwar Pujara pointed out that at times the youngster needs to see the bigger picture and play as per situation to get the team in a better position.

Pant and Pujara came together with India in a spot of bother at 73/4, but forged a partnership 119 runs for the fifth wickets with Pant playing the way he knows. But his untimely dismissal for 91, especially after Pujara had gotten out, allowed England to dismiss two set batsmen and apply pressure.

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"The way Rishabh bats especially against spinners, I think he likes to take them on and that's the way he will go about it," Pujara in the post-match press conference. "He still has to learn a few more things, he still has to put the team in a commanding position because he is capable of that and he's missing out on hundreds. I'm sure he will learn from this but it is good that he is in form."

This was Pant's fourth dismissal in the 90s in Tests. However, it takes nothing away from the impressive counter-attacking punch he delivered on England. He was highly impressive against left-arm spinner Jack Leach, taking the attack to him, smashing him for five sixes. But having said that, attack is what comes naturally to Pant, so Pujara did not dwell much on the youngster's approach.

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"It is his (Pant) natural game so we cannot restrict him much. He can't be too defensive because by doing so he can get out quickly. It is good for his game that he keeps on playing his shots but, at times, he has to be very selective," said Pujara at the end of the day's play.

"He needs to understand which shots to play, which not. He needs to understand in which situation it is important that he stays in the crease. Balancing things out is the most important for him," said one of the calmest influences in the Indian dressing room.

Pant's dismissal brought out the pair of R Ashwin and Washington Sundar together, who batted to put on 32 off 104 balls but stumps on Day 3 to ensure no further harm was inflicted on India. India ended the day at 257/6, trailing England by 321 runs and even though they could have really done without having to endure the Pant blow, Pujara backed the youngster to come out better from such dismissals.

"He will learn from his mistakes. There are times when he can be little more patient and build another partnership with whoever is there in the crease. He is capable of putting the team first because whenever he bats longer, then we will always end up posting a big total. So, I am sure he will realise that," Pujara added.

"And then there are times when he also has to understand and the coaching staff always communicates with him that. He has to put the team first and be little sensible at times. He has done that most of the times. There are times when gets out and looks ugly."

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