Home Cricket News Cheteshwar Pujara To Play Duleep Trophy Ahead West Indies Tour: Reports

Cheteshwar Pujara To Play Duleep Trophy Ahead West Indies Tour: Reports

Cheteshwar Pujara To Play Duleep Trophy Ahead West Indies Tour: Reports

After being left out of the Indian Test squad for the tour of the West Indies, Cheteshwar Pujara will compete for West Zone in the upcoming Duleep Trophy, according to the Times of India.

India’s first overseas assignment following the World Test Championship Final will be a tour of the West Indies. The tour begins with a two-Test series, with the first game beginning on July 12 in Dominica.

India’s 2023–2025 World Test Championship cycle officially kicks off with this series.

According to reports, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Yashasvi Jaiswal will be replaced by Pujara and Suryakumar Yadav in the West Zone team for the Duleep Trophy. Beginning in July, the semifinal will feature the winner of the contest between Central and East Zone.

Ruturaj Gaikwad and Yashasvi Jaiswal are both on the Test squad that was released by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for the West Indies tour.

Gaikwad was also chosen as a standby player for the recently finished WTC Final against Australia, but due to his marriage, he chose to withdraw and was subsequently replaced by Jaiswal.

Pujara had a poor performance in the WTC Final, scoring just 14 and 27, so a comeback might be too much to ask given that the team will probably undergo a change during the following WTC cycle.

However, sources from TOI claim that it might not be all bad news for the seasoned batter. According to rumors, Rahul Dravid, the head coach, and the selectors wanted to give young players a chance on the West Indian tour.

Pujara has received their communication regarding a potential return to the team should he score runs in domestic cricket. The 35-year-old has enjoyed great success in first-class cricket, but hasn’t been able to translate that success to the international stage.

Pujara has scored only 181 runs in five tests this year, averaging 25.85, with no centuries. Since 2020, he has struggled in the longer format, scoring just one century—against Bangladesh—while averaging a pitiful 29 points in 28 Tests.

Ajinkya Rahane’s appointment as vice-captain was the other significant development from the selection of the Indian Test team.

Rahane, who had been left off the Test team after the South Africa tour in 2021–2022 returned for the WTC Final as a result of a strong performance in the 2022–2023 Ranji season.

The 35-year-old seized his chance in the championship match, leading India in scoring in the first innings with 89, and adding another significant 46 in the second.

As he makes one last attempt in domestic cricket to be selected for the Indian Test team, Pujara will take motivation from his teammate. Following a busy season that included the IPL and WTC Final, Team India has also rested pace spearhead Mohammad Shami for the West Indian tour.

The two wicketkeepers from the WTC Final squad, KS Bharat and Ishan Kishan, will also be kept on by the selectors. The Indians, led by Rohit Sharma, will try to get off to a good start and advance to their third straight World Team Championship final.

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