IND vs AUS: “Australia a very competitive side, they throw a challenge at you” – Cheteshwar Pujara
India National Cricket Team star batsman Cheteshwar Pujara, 35, praised the Australian National Cricket Team from the “competitive side” and said they always come up with a big challenge for the opposition.
Australia are currently in India for the upcoming 2023 Border-Gavaskar Trophy. The 4-match test series between Rohit Sharma-led India and Pat Cummins-led Australia kicks off at Nagpur on February 9. The remaining matches will also be played in Delhi, Dharamsala and Ahmedabad.
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In an interview with The Bharat Express News, Cheteshwar Pujara, who is about to play his 100th Test in Delhi against the Aussies, was asked what has helped him perform brilliantly against Australia over the years.
He replied that Australia is a fighting team and he enjoys fighting against strong opposition. The 35-year-old explained:
“They are a competitive side. They throw a challenge at you, and I’m one who likes to fight that (kind of) fight. It’s not just the verbal battle I’m talking about, but the cricket battle. Much has been said about the Aussies chatting a lot on the pitch, but the main part I look up to as a cricketer is a cricket challenge. They are always a fighting team.
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“As a player, when the team is in a difficult situation, it’s your role to make sure you get it out of trouble. There have been times when I’ve scored such important shots, most of them coming against the Australians “I think it’s about being mentally strong in what you want to achieve for your team, for your country. And that helped me get that motivation to do well against such a good team.”
Meanwhile, Cheteshwar Pujara, who made his Test debut in 2010 against Australia in Bengaluru, has scored 1893 runs at an average of 54.08, with 5 centuries and 10 half-centuries, in 20 Tests against the Aussies.
That was the best run of my cricket career – Cheteshwar Pujara at the 2018-19 Border-Gavaskar Trophy
Cheteshwar Pujara further labeled the 2018-19 Border-Gavaskar Trophy as the best run of his career.
He said: “I enjoyed some good runs, but this was the best run of my cricket career. The way I was hitting, concentrating… there was a lot of physical and mental stress during that series. Every game was a challenge.”
Notably, Pujara finished as the highest run-getter in the series as he scored 521 runs in 4 Tests at an amazing average of 74.42, with 3 tons and 150, to help India achieve a historic first series win . He had seen a record 1258 balls in the series.
Cheteshwar Pujara was further asked about his preparations for the upcoming Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
He replied: “I played a few Ranji Trophy matches as part of the preparation for the series against Australia. Apart from that, I practiced at home in Rajkot. I can’t reveal specific things, but there are things I’m working on, a few points that will help me through this series.
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