Cheteshwar Pujara was a key player for Team India in their back-to-back Test series wins on the tour of Australia. While Pujara amassed 521 runs on the 2018-19 tour of Australia, he batted like a fighter for his 271 runs on the 2020-21 tour.
With less than a week to go for the 2023 edition of Border-Gavaskar Trophy, Pujara recalled his exploits from the 2018-19 tour, saying that it was the best series of his cricketing career.
"I've enjoyed a few good series. But that was the best series of my cricketing career. The way I was batting, concentrating, there was a lot of physical and mental stress during that series. Every game was a challenge," Pujara told Times of India.
Australia may not have won a Test series on Indian soil since 2004 but they are coming with the tag of world’s No. 1 team this time around, having won games in all conditions this season.
Pujara also acknowledged that the Pat Cummins-led side is a highly competitive one.
"They are a competitive side. They throw a challenge at you and I'm someone who likes that kind of battle. It's not just the verbal battle, but the cricketing battle. They are always a fighting team. As a player, whenever the team is in a difficult situation, your role is to ensure that you pull them out of trouble," India’s Test specialist said.
"There have been times when I've played such important knocks and most of them have come against the Australians. I think it's about being mentally strong about what you want to achieve for your team, for your country," he added.
The highly-anticipated Test series between India and Australia is slated to get underway on February 9 in Nagpur. Delhi will host the second Test from February 17 while Dharamshala and Ahmedabad will stage the third and fourth Tests from March 1 and March 9, respectively.