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Test cricket is always my priority, declares Cheteshwar Pujara

The in-form batsman is looking forward to developing his game to play white-ball cricket.

Cheteshwar Pujara
Cheteshwar Pujara. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)

It will be a long recess from international cricket for Cheteshwar Pujara after the glorious show in Australia. Having last played an ODI in 2014, the number three batsman is not a part of the plans for the upcoming World Cup. Team India will only play limited-overs cricket followed by the IPL until the mega-tournament is done and dusted.

Hence, Pujara has a lot of time on hand and has the option of taking a much-needed break. Yet, the 30-year-old is pretty much determined to play some domestic cricket. Moreover, he is interested in plying his trade in county cricket during the IPL just like he did last year. Cheteshwar Pujara went unsold in the IPL 2019 auction even though he set his base price at just Rs. 50 lakhs.

The right-hander said that he is ready to work on a few aspects of his game so that he gets to play white-ball cricket. However, he was clear that his main priority would be Test cricket. This was quite gratifying because every aspiring youngster nowadays wishes to play in the glamorous T20 leagues growing up.

Pujara not interested in taking a break

“I’ll be playing some first-class cricket back home. During IPL, I might be playing county cricket. Next Test series is 6-7 months away. Will give me enough time to prepare. I’ll work hard on my game to play white-ball cricket. But Test cricket is my priority, it’ll always remain my priority,” Pujara said at the post-match presentation of the fourth Test against Australia.

Cheteshwar Pujara also credited county cricket for his improvement in his technique. “As a batsman, you just need to get used to pace and bounce. Playing in different conditions, in South Africa, in England, in county cricket has helped me improve my technique. For me it’s about the right preparation,” he added.

He was the highest scorer in Australia series with 521 runs in 4 games. Pujara hit three centuries and played a critical role in helping the Indian team clinch its first series down under.

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