This injured player has been quite an important asset for the side in the past especially for his phenomenal contributions in red ball cricket.
The men in blue are currently playing the Carribbeans at home and are dominating the results quite casually. The red ball cricket dominance established by the hosts was replicated in the One day series as well which followed after that. The test series was white washed by a margin of 2-0 while the latter’s results stood at 3-1 in favour of the men in blue. With only the T20I series left in this tour, India would look forward to continue their winning spree. However, the biggest challenge for India waiting ahead is their overseas assignment against Australia.
The tour will start with the shortest format of cricket on November 21. It would be followed by the most important Border- Gavaskar trophy which is the red ball cricket format. India’s prime focus on this tour would be to retain the trophy this time as well by defeating the Kangaroos at home.
Considering Australia’s inexperienced and new line up as compared to the full fledged team of the men in blue, this doesn’t seem a mammoth task. However, neglecting any team at home would indeed not be a wise thought process. Therefore the selection committee has taken proper care to form squads accordingly considering their adaptability to the different formats and the conditions prevailing over there.
Cheteswar Pujara has been a stand out favourite for the red ball format for quite some time and has also been included in the squad for the same ahead of the India-Australia series. However, the selection committee has received a huge blow as the cricketer has recently been injured in the ongoing Ranji trophy match between Saurashtra and Chhattisgarh on Thursday.
The batsman was proceeding steadily with his innings when the mishap happened. He had to leave the field midway through his innings after consultation with the team physio owing to his stiff neck. He was on 30 runs off 64 deliveries when he was retired hurt. The test cricket specialist wanted to have a greater grip over his batting prior to the Australian tour and had hence decided to feature in the Ranji trophy matches for Saurashtra.
However, this decision seemed to have served as a boomerang for him. With only few days left for the clash, getting injured is not a good sign for the management at all. Meanwhile, the Saurashtra coach, Shitanshu Kotak has given us a partially relieving statement regarding his comeback for the Friday session as the injury is not that grave.
“He will be ready to bat on Friday, if required.”
Pujara had an impressive overseas series against the England and the selection committee harbours it’s hopes on him for a similar performance against the Australians as well. We would have to wait and watch whether the injured cricketer displays what is expected of him in the upcoming assignment.