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Friday, Aug 23, 2019

Cheteshwar Pujara says county stint helped him improve technically

Cheteshwar Pujara credits his recent success to his stints in English county cricket.

india-vs-sri-lanka-2017 Updated: Aug 14, 2017 17:50 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Cheteshwar Pujara (2L) played an instrumental role in India’s 3-0 whitewash of Sri Lanka.
Cheteshwar Pujara (2L) played an instrumental role in India’s 3-0 whitewash of Sri Lanka.(Reuters)

Cheteshwar Pujara, who has played for English county teams such as Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire in the recent past, on Monday acknowledged the role which the stints played in his overall development as a batsman.

Pujara finished second behind Shikhar Dhawan in terms of highest run-getters in the recently-concluded India versus Sri Lanka Test series. Pujara played a crucial role for India in their first-ever overseas series whitewash, scoring 309 runs at 77.25 with two centuries in the three-Test series.

The India No.3 batsman, who had scored more than a thousand runs last home season, has managed to maintain his form and a lot of credit goes to his recent short stint with Nottinghamshire. Pujara played two matches for the county team, and even smacked a century on debut. His scores in the short county stint read 112, 29, 13 and 67.

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Pujara, according to ESPNCricinfo, is expected to join the Nottinghamshire team as the Indian side will return home for a five-match ODI series against Australia.

Pujara, who is not in India’s limited-overs side, thus gets some time to either cool off or head to England to play more county cricket, which certainly will help the batsman ahead of the national team’s five-Test series next year.

Post India’s win at Pallekele by an innings and 181 runs, Pujara said, “This team I think has the potential to play well even overseas. As a team we would definitely like to succeed and win series overseas as well.”

When asked whether he will be joining Nottinghamshire, Pujara said, “Yes, I would like to (play) some more county matches…”

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“Playing county did help me. Playing on seaming wickets in county cricket, those are challenging wickets, so as a batsman you improve, your technique can improve as a cricketer as well,” he added.

Ajinkya Rahane, who smacked as many as 336 runs in five ODIs in the West Indies, welcomed the competition among the batsmen in the Indian team. India were without their preferred openers in Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul for the tour of the Caribbean, and Rahane took this opportunity by scoring runs at 67.20 with three fifties and one century.

Rahane, however, said he likes to keep things simple.

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“It’s a good thing that we have a very good competition. For me, I just look to keep things simple, whenever I get an opportunity I do well for my team,” Rahane said.

First Published: Aug 14, 2017 17:48 IST

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