CHENNAI: The final time India performed a Take a look at in Southampton – venue for the World Take a look at Championship closing towards New Zealand subsequent month – Cheteshwar Pujara had scored an unbeaten 132. Whereas India misplaced that recreation towards England, Pujara performed his half in conserving his facet within the hunt.
The 33-year-old will as soon as once more be an important issue as India look to win the inaugural WTC crown. Throughout a chat with TOI, Pujara spoke on the pandemic, Workforce India’s bench power in latest instances and extra.
How has the pandemic affected your preparation for the England tour?
It is a robust time for everybody the world over, and it is a state of affairs that occurs as soon as in 100 years or extra. The lucky half is that we’re capable of play and the WTC closing goes forward as per schedule. Even when we’re quick preparation-wise, I really feel the workforce has sufficient expertise to ship a robust efficiency. This Indian workforce, in latest instances, has proven the wherewithal to win on all surfaces and we’ll carry that confidence into the match towards New Zealand and the next Take a look at sequence towards England.
Has there been any change in your coaching strategies for the reason that pandemic began?
In the case of my batting – you’ll be able to’t have totally different strategies. However in terms of coaching, you must determine alternative ways to do it, particularly when you find yourself in quarantine. You must communicate to the coach to determine totally different concepts to maintain your self match and occupied. The quarantine forward of each sequence turns into probably the most difficult half. The constructive factor is that gamers are keen to coach even in the course of the quarantine and that helps us keep in one of the best form as soon as we begin apply.
Your ideas on the WTC Last?
The Indian workforce has charted a exceptional journey within the final two years. We now have performed effectively to qualify for the ultimate and everyone seems to be wanting ahead to it. The India-New Zealand closing will likely be a conflict between two top-quality sides. It’ll undoubtedly be a great recreation as each groups are evenly matched.
What’s your tackle the NZ assault. Who would be the bowler to look out for?
I do not need to title any explicit bowler of their line-up. Their bowling assault may be very well-balanced. We now have confronted their bowlers earlier than and have a good thought of how they function, the angles they use and we will likely be ready.
You guys misplaced a sequence to the Kiwis final yr. Will that give them a psychological edge?
I do not assume so. After we performed the Kiwis in 2020, it was of their yard. That will not be the case within the WTC closing since it is a impartial venue for each the groups. Not one of the groups could have a house benefit. We now have our bases lined and if we play to our potential – then we’ve got the power to beat any facet on this planet.
India misplaced their final Take a look at in Southampton in 2018. Had been there any classes learnt that may assist you on this recreation?
It’s tough to evaluate one explicit recreation. We have been in a commanding place (towards England in 2018) and had our probabilities. However I will not assess that Take a look at with the WTC closing as a result of we’re enjoying a unique facet this time. The one factor which we have to take from any recreation is the constructive elements and that is what I all the time imagine in.
Within the final decade that you’ve been a part of the Indian workforce — is that this the strongest bench power it has ever had?
Completely. The quantity of expertise within the Indian circuit is humongous. Be it our bowling or batting -we have the backup for the gamers. The Australia sequence earlier this yr was an instance. We had so many accidents, however the backup choices did effectively for us to win the sequence. Everybody on this Indian workforce is hungry to do effectively and that is the signal of a great facet.
India final received a Take a look at sequence in England again in 2007. Do you reckon that is one of the best likelihood for the facet to win a Take a look at sequence in England?
For positive, we’ve got the workforce to win in England. We now have been doing effectively in abroad situations just lately. The boldness within the workforce is excessive. In each division of the sport – our facet has high-quality gamers and if we’re capable of execute our plans on the given day – the outcomes will likely be in our favour towards England.