Cheteshwar Pujara celebrates a century for Sussex.© Twitter
India batter Cheteshwar Pujara was in top form for Sussex in the One Day Cup. Known as a Test specialist, Pujara notched up 624 runs from nine matches, including three centuries and two fifties at an average of almost 90, striking at 112. Pujara, over the years, has struggled to get into India’s white-ball squads, having played just five ODIs in his career so far. Although he has been picked by a few Indian Premier League teams, Pujara has not been able to break into the playing XI. He was last picked in the IPL by Chennai Super Kings in 2021, but did not play a single game.
During a recent interaction, Pujara revealed how the CSK snub prompted him to add a new dimension to his batting.
“This is a different side of my game for sure. There is no doubt about it. Pitches were good, slightly flat but even on those surfaces, you need to have that intent of scoring at a higher strike-rate. This is something which I have always worked on,” Pujara said on ‘The Cricket Podcast’.
“I was part of CSK a year before last and when I didn’t play any games and saw the guys prepare, I told myself that if I want to play the shorter format, I need to be a little more fearless. I always used to put a big prize on my wicket but I the shorter formats, you still want to play your shots in your game,” he went on to say.
Pujara further revealed how batting coach Grant Flower helped him to add a different layer to his batting in the shorter formats.
“I worked on it before the Royal London One-Day Cup. I went with Grant and spoke to him that there are some shots which I want to work on. When we were training, he told me that I am executing those really well and that gave me confidence. I thought that if I could keep working on some of the lofted shots which could help me and if I can execute those, I could be successful even in shorter formats,” he added.
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