India's first innings score of 443/7 (declared) is significant enough for the visitors to feel good about their chances in wake of a flat but deteriorating surface at MCG for the iconic Boxing Day Test, said the truly exceptional and wonderfully rare Cheteshwar Pujara
Resuming his solid knock on 68*, the affable Indian no.3 brought up an inevitable and brilliant hundred on Day 2 - his 17th at the highest level and now second in Australia going past the tally of the absolutely marvellous Rahul Dravid who had only one.
"It is a tough pitch to score runs on. I feel if you look at it.. the first two days the number of runs I scored, which are very less," said Pujara during the post-play press conference, after recording his slowest hundred at the Test level so far, "I would say scoring 200 in a day is a tough task, so I think we have enough runs on the board."
"The pitch has already started deteriorating and there is variable bounce already. When I was batting yesterday and when I was batting today, I felt there was a difference and I think it is not easier to bat now."
"From tomorrow onwards it will not get easier to bat and our bowlers have been bowling well so I would say we have enough runs on the board," he added.
Pujara, who now has 5,233 runs at an astonishing average of 50.32, also went past 2000 Test runs away from home in his 31st match for India.
"We have to bat according to the situation and the wicket. On this pitch, if we see, the batsmen are having to play a lot of balls to score runs," the 30-year-old, who eventually got out for 106, further said, "It was difficult but if it had been some other wicket I would have made at least 150-60 runs. It is important to play accordingly after reading the pitch and situation."
"It has been good tour so far personally but firstly this Test is very important for us. The series is 1-1 and we all know how important the result is going to be. We are focusing on our game plan... the batting has been good but we also need to pick up 20 wickets," he concluded.
Australia finished the day with their openers safely not out, at 8/0.
(Inputs from cricket.com.au)