The name Cheteshwar Pujara was surrounding all over social media for all negative reasons a few days back. However, now things have completely changed as Pujara has become a hot topic of discussion for his exceptional performance with bat against England on Day 3 of Headingley, Leeds Test. Even former Pakistan captain Salman Butt has said that there was clarity in the way Pujara batted in India’s second innings.
Notably, Pujara entered into the second innings after a disappointing outcome in the first innings. As he was dismissed at the score of 1 by James Anderson on Day 1. However, he decided to make Day 3 his day by smashing boundaries from the start of the innings. He scored unbeaten 91 when India was having a tough time against the fierce English pace battery.
Talking about Pujara’s knock Salman Butt pinpointed the Indian Test specialist utilized every bit of the loose balls he got during the early stage of his innings. Salman Butt said:
“There was clarity in Pujara’s batting on Day 3. When he first came in to bat, he got quite a few balls on leg. Out of his first few boundaries, three were on the leg side, which he flicked towards square leg and midwicket. So, Pujara took advantage of the loose balls that he got early in his innings. His strike rotation was also impressive.”
Salman Butt reckons that if Pujara reaches his century then England will have a tough time dealing with India in the match. Also, the former Pakistan captain feels Pujara coming back in form is very good news for India as two more Tests are remaining. He elaborated:
“Pujara’s outright attitude was positive and mindset was clear. He wanted to play his shots. As a result, he scored runs and got his confidence back as well. Pujara shifted the pressure back to the England bowlers. If he goes on to score a big hundred, then England could be in a bit of trouble. Also, Pujara’s return to form is great news for India with two more Tests coming up.”
Four! Banged in short and pulled away for four. @cheteshwar1 brings up a fine half-century.
This is his 30th in Test cricket.
— BCCI (@BCCI) August 27, 2021
“The first two hours on Day 4 will be extremely crucial” – Salman Butt
Further, Salman Butt mentioned that the Kohli-Pujara partnership is going to be a very crucial one for India. He also warned Indian batsmen to be careful against Moeen Ali who can turn out to be lethal if the pitch supports him.
“The first two hours on Day 4 will be extremely crucial. If Pujara and Virat Kohli can survive 20 overs against new ball, things will get easier for them. They (Pujara-Kohli) need to try and bat at least till lunch. Also, India will need to be careful against Moeen Ali because lot of rough has developed, especially for the right-handers outside the off stump. Off spinners will be effective. Even Joe Root got one to turn sharply.”
Salman Butt concluded by saying that India will stay in the game if they score 70 runs in the first session. He asserted:
“If India manage to score 70 runs in the first session and lose not more than one wicket, they will stay in the game. It won’t be easy and a lot will depend on how they start.”
It's Stumps on Day 3 of the 3⃣rd #ENGvIND Test at Headingley!
A solid & gritty batting display by #TeamIndia to end the day at 215/2. 👍
— BCCI (@BCCI) August 27, 2021