Cheteshwar Pujara has continued his superb form in the second Test match against England. After hitting a century in the first Test, he has hit another ton at Visakhapatnam. Pujara raised the bat and celebrated his 10th international century which is also the fourth against England. He came at the crease in the second over itself as India lost KL Rahul’s wicket with just 6 runs on the board. India were in trouble when Murali Vijay was dismissed with the score being 22/2. Thanks to centuries from captain Virat Kohli and Pujara, India are in a much more respectable position.
The best at number 3
The batsman who bats at number three is regarded as the best in the team. Rahul Dravid performed that role for India for decades and was one of the best in the world. Post Dravid’s retirement, comparisons were made between Pujara and him. Few years down the line, Pujara has answered all his critics by simply performing well with the bat. In his career so far, Pujara has played 40 matches. In 67 innings, he has scored 3116 runs at an average of 51.08 runs with 10 centuries and 10 fifties.
Pujara loves playing against England
He walked in the middle when India was struggling again. In-form Pujara timed the ball really well and found the gaps at will. With two mighty sixes and 12 boundaries, his innings of 119 was a reminder of what he has been doing for a long time. Pujara averages 46.05 against England and has scored 921 runs in 20 innings. Out of his 10 centuries, 4 have come against England. His highest score of 206 not out also comes against the same opposition. He played that knock in Ahmedabad in 2012. In the ongoing Test series, he has already scored two consecutive centuries in two matches.
Purple patch in 2016
This year, Cheteshwar Pujara averages 69.6 in the 11 innings that he has played so far. He has added 696 runs with the bat and has consolidated India’s position time and again after early losses. He played two innings and scored 16 and 42 at an average of 36 against the West Indies. He was criticized for his slow strike-rate and as India returned from the tour, Pujara unleashed his new version. Against the Kiwis, he scored 373 (62, 78, 87, 4, 41, and 101*) runs in 6 innings at an average of 74.6 with a decent strike rate. In the ongoing Test series against England, he averages 87 with 124, 18 and 119 to his name in the three innings.