Cheteshwar Pujara was named in the Indian squad for the rescheduled fifth Test against England after some impressive outings in the 2022 County Championship. The right-hander has registered 720 runs for Sussex across the five games in Division Two, which includes four centuries to an average of 120. The veteran hitter will now look to re-seal his place in the team after missing the team in the previous home series against Sri Lanka.
BCCI offered him and Ajinkya Rahane a central contract despite their poor returns over the past two years for India a few weeks ago and let them know that the doors were still open. Pujara found no buyers at the 2022 IPL Mega Auction and his decision to play county cricket turned out to be a blessing in disguise as he was back with his supreme touch.
After returning from the Indian side, Pujara shared that he wouldn’t have gotten playing time even if he was picked in the IPL 2022 auction and felt that his time in the county had given him his old rhythm. He added that he was optimistic about his return to the Indian side and revealed how his confidence skyrocketed once he started playing county cricket. He added that he was still one big round away from putting things back together.
“You can say that now looking back. If I had been picked by an IPL team, chances were I wouldn’t have had any matches. I would have just gone (to the nets) and practiced. Training in matches and training in the net is always different. So when the county thing happened, I just said yes. The main reason I said yes to Comté (passage) is because I wanted to get back to my old rhythm,” Pujara told The Indian Express from Paris, where he is on vacation.
“I was positive, there was no doubt about it. Looking at my time in the county, I was hopeful of making a comeback to the Indian team. But when I went to play cricket from county, I never thought about coming back from India; I just wanted to find my rhythm and I knew that a big run would help me find my rhythm.
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