Cheteshwar Pujara of Team India noted that the visiting sides are always under pressure in the spin-friendly subcontinent conditions. The last time the Men in Blue lost a Test series on home soil was in 2012, when they were defeated 2-1 by England.
They’ve built a dominant home record since then, relying on their superior batting strength and spin-bowling ability. Pujara stated in a pre-match interview ahead of the first Test against Australia that if the Indian batting unit piles up runs, the opposition will be under even more pressure than usual.
“As a batting unit, if we put up enough runs on the board. In Indian conditions, the opposition is always under pressure.”
Pujara said of the importance of players accepting responsibility and understanding their roles:
“It would be nice to repeat that performance (2018-19 tour) , but it is never easy when playing against the Australian team. The important part here, as a player, as an individual, is that one needs to understand the responsibility and the role for the team, and I would like to play that role.”
Apart from defending their winning streak at home, the four-match series against their opponents appears to be a must-win series, with their World Test Championship (WTC) final aspirations in mind.
“I am really looking forward to it and there is a lot to play for” – Cheteshwar Pujara
India is ranked second in the table, and a strong performance in the upcoming series will propel them into the final for the second time in a row.
Cheteshwar Pujara has played a significant role in Team India’s recent victories over Australia, whether at home or away. For his efforts in the 2018-19 Border-Gavaskar Trophy in Australia, the tenacious batter was named Player of the Series. Pujara admitted that a four-match Test series against Australia is a tempting prospect as a pure red-ball batter, saying:
“I am delighted as a Test player, and if you look at the India-Australia series, the past two-three series, even the one we played in India has been competitive. As a Test player, I am really looking forward to it and there is a lot to play for. If you look at our status, we need to win at least 2 Test matches to make it to the WTC Final. Hopefully, we will do well in this series.”
Pujara continued, adding that he has not set any specific goals for the upcoming series:
“I’m not someone who sets big goals. I would like to take one Test match at a time. And when you’re playing a Test you want to break it down into smaller targets. I always look to bat one hour or one session at a time. Not really big goals but really looking forward to this series,” Cheteshwar Pujara concluded.
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