⚬ India’s No.3 Cheteshwar Pujara is the real reason behind the edge against Australia.
⚬ Pujara scored his third century of the series today, and his 18th overall.
⚬ He’s only the fifth Indian to score three or more centuries in an overseas series.
⚬ This is the third time that Pujara has scored 400+ runs in a series vs Australia
India’s batsman Number three, Cheteshwar Pujara is the real reason behind India’s success in Australia. Not too long ago, Pujara was incessantly criticized for his “boring” cricket. Little did they know that this “boring” quotient would frustrate Australia. this time the boring meant how long he remained on the crease. And not only that, he kept scoring those runs. The three centuries that he has hit so far in the series is a testimony.
When Prithvi Shaw was ruled out of the series, due to injury, before the Adelaide test it paved way for an ‘opening conundrum’ for India. India was left with no other option but to go for the combination of KL Rahul and Murali Vijay. Eventually, both of them disappointed with horrible performances. Australia too has had a problem in deciding the top three. Usman Khawaja was stooped down to the number three position to accommodate Aaron Finch as an opener. It didn’t work out for Australia. Neither of Finch or Khawaja did anything impressive for Australia.
The Fall of Wickets in the 1st innings of the Adelaide Test: 1-3 (KL Rahul, 1.6 ov), 2-15 (M Vijay, 6.6 ov), 3-19 (V Kohli, 10.3 ov), 4-41 (AM Rahane, 20.2 ov), 5-86 (RG Sharma, 37.3 ov), 6-127 (RR Pant, 49.1 ov), 7-189 (R Ashwin, 73.6 ov), 8-210 (I Sharma, 82.4 ov), 9-250 (CA Pujara, 87.5 ov)
It was clear that both the top orders were a little shaky. But there was a difference between the two sides, and it was number three. Cheteshwar Pujara stepped up for India right from the Adelaide Test. It could be deciphered from the FOW of the 1st innings of the Adelaide Test(above) how vital Pujara’s 123 was. In the end, India won the match by just 31 runs and needless to say Pujara’s hundred was the key. From then on Pujara never looked back. He remained 130 not out today, at the SCG, and helped India reach 303 at the end of Day 1.
⚬ Cheteshwar Pujara scored his 18th Test century today. He’s now seventh in the list of most number of Test hundreds hit by Indian batsmen.
⚬ He is also the 11th(5363 runs) highest run scorer for India in Test. He went past Kapil Dev today.
⚬ Pujara has now scored 400+ runs in this series so far. This is the third time he has done so in a series against Australia. Also, the second Indian to do so after Sachin Tendulkar.
⚬ Only four Indian cricketers, other than Pujara, have scored three or most hundreds in a series overseas.