I rate my 92 in Bangalore over my 202 in Ranchi: Cheteshwar Pujara

I rate my 92 in Bangalore over my 202 in Ranchi: Cheteshwar Pujara

The Indian batter said that there were no over the top celebrations when he went back home to Rajkot. There were just a few relatives and good home-cooked food.

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Cheteshwar Pujara of India. (Photo by Morne de Klerk/Getty Images)

Cheteshwar Pujara had a superb season with the Indian team. Scoring over 1378 runs in 16 Test matches is unbelievable. Pujara is one of those players who plays only Test cricket for India and has little to do when India are busy playing ODIs or if the IPL is going on.

The Indian batter said that there were no over the top celebrations when he went back home to Rajkot. There were just a few relatives and good home-cooked food. Pujara has already started preparing for the overseas trips where he could not do that well. He stated that he had a few things in mind for his preparation.

“Back in my mind, that’s always there, that I couldn’t score as many runs as I had wanted in England and Australia. So in this spare time, I’ve planned to work on a few things,” said Pujara while talking to the Indian Express.

The Rajkot-based player scored a magnificent double century against an excellent bowling attack in Ranchi. After playing over 500 deliveries and scoring 200 runs Pujara’s father had only two words in his congratulatory message, it said, “Well Played”. That is all Pujara gets for playing any sort of innings.

Pujara revealed that his father is not so expressive and keeps is short all the time. The Indian batter said, “Whether I score a hundred or a double hundred, he congratulates me with these same words. He doesn’t get overboard emotionally. He is not very expressive. Not just in cricket, but in life too.”

However, when asked about playing the long innings, Pujara said that he no longer is satisfied by the marathon innings but it’s the magnitude of the knock that satisfies him. For instance, his 92 in Bangalore is rated higher by him than his 202 in Ranchi.

“Now, I feel content if my knock, be it a 50 or 200, comes at a vital juncture of the match, and if helps my team win the match. So I rate my 92 (in Bangalore) over my 202 (in Ranchi). It’s a big mistake if you start counting your longest innings as your best innings,” explained Pujara.

Pujara said that his inning of 92 was very important because it took India out of huge trouble. That partnership of his with Ajinkya Rahane helped team India script a fantastic win over their rivals. He said, “When I walked back (after being dismissed), I was not regretting those eight runs I didn’t get but was feeling happy that Ajinkya and I had pulled the team out of trouble and put them in a reasonably secure position.”

Pujara claimed that the inning of 92 runs was mentally draining and it was even more tiresome than the Ranchi innings. “In your mind, it felt even longer than the Ranchi effort,” exclaimed the Indian batter.

Coming to sledging which was one of the talking points of the series against Australia, Pujara said that he does sledge and it happens naturally as he does not plan it beforehand. “I do sledge. We all sledge, but it’s something that happens spontaneously, as in we don’t plan to do it beforehand. It just happens, and the only thing we are concerned is that we don’t cross the line. We are careful to not make personal comments at the opponents,” revealed Pujara.