Friday, December 8, 2023

Pujara lauds India’s batting effort

Adelaide, Dec 11 (IANS) Batsman Cheteshwar Pujara Thursday exuded confidence that India will continue to put on an impressive batting display on day four of the ongoing first Test against Australia at the Adelaide Oval and overhaul the host’s first innings total of 517 for seven declared.

Skipper Virat Kohli led India’s batting reply with a superb 115, followed by assured batting performances from Pujara (73), Murali Vijay (53) and Ajinkya Rahane (62) to help the tourists finish the day three action with 369 for five, trailing Australia by 148 runs.

�The plan was to fight back. We discussed that with our batting lineup we can definitely score the number of runs they scored on this wicket. It was about proving to ourselves that we can achieve it and we are in a good position to do so,” he said.

Pujara said his team is now focussed on capitalising on the positive start they have made.

�They tried bowling into the stumps as well as outside the off-stump. But the way we batted, we should get some credit for it. We want to respect all the bowlers and be aggressive at the same time. We are here to score runs and that�s what we have done. This is a positive start for us and we want to carry on,” the right-handed batsman said.

�Most of our batsmen scored runs, starting from our openers and we always had one partnership going. They all spent time in the middle and that is a positive for us.�

The No.3 batsman was particularly effusive in his praise for Kohli, who was struck in the middle of his helmet by a bouncer from Mitchell Johnson off the first ball he faced, but went on to score a brave 115.

�He forgot about that ball that hit him and batted really well. His innings was very crucial for us and it was fun to watch him today.�

He admitted the disappointment of not converting a fifty into a hundred but wasn’t overly concerned.

�At times I do feel disappointed that I haven�t been able to capitalise on my starts. But then I understand that you can�t score a double century each time in cricket. I want to score as many runs as possible but it doesn�t always happen,� he said.

�Sometimes, you have to respect the opposition and accept it. But every time I get out, I assess what went wrong and try to come back strongly.�

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