IND v ENG 2021: "I don't think pitch in second Test was a dangerous one," says Cheteshwar Pujara

Pujara says India plays on green seaming tracks overseas, but haven't complained.

Cheteshwar Pujara | Getty

Cheteshwar Pujara said that pitch in the second Test in Chennai was not at all dangerous and it was just a matter of the wicket offering some turn while addressing the complaints of the pitch in Chennai which offered turn right from day one. 

Replying to the India’s first innings total of 329 runs in the second Test match, England were bundled out for just 134 runs and following that many English pundits criticised the Chennai pitch and compared the surface at Chepauk to a beach and said that conditions were unacceptable to Test match cricket. 

While reflecting on the criticism of the Chennai wicket for the 2nd Test, India’s No.3 in Test matches, Cheteshwar Pujara said that the pitch was not dangerous and added that when Team India plays in overseas condition they don't complain on seaming tracks overseas.

“Sometimes you know when you are playing on a turning track, you find it difficult but at the same time, it was not a dangerous pitch at all. When the ball spins you know people find it difficult to score runs, especially the overseas teams. 

“When we go overseas and we play on seaming tracks, the game finishes in three or four days. We still have to play on such wickets where there is a lot of grass or seam movement,” Cheteshwar Pujara said.

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Pujara defended the pitch saying the second innings is always difficult in Test cricket. He cited the example of Australia saying the wickets there crumble in the last 2 days as well making the ball bounce unevenly.

In turning tracks, one cannot define how much the ball can spin. It is a very thin line in that way. I do not think it was a bad pitch, it always becomes difficult in the second innings, this is how it is. 

“When we play in Australia, there are cracks on day four and five, it is a little dangerous, the oddball hits the crack and it might take off. As a team I do not think we had any issues, once opposition teams start playing more on these pitches, they will be fine,” he said. 

While reflecting on the pink-ball Test Pujara said that it is difficult to predict whether to keep grass cover or not, because Team India has played only one pink-ball Test and added that it is important game for Team India to qualify for the final of ICC World Test Championship.

“We have played just one day-night game in India and it was with the SG ball. Domestic games which I have played were with the kookaburra ball. To be honest, it is difficult to predict whether you can keep the grass cover.

"It is an important game for us to qualify for the finals of the World Test Championship, we will try to focus on the game,” said Cheteshwar Pujara.

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Cheteshwar Pujara further said that he doesn’t have much experience playing with pink-ball and added that Team India will stick to their game plans for the next two matches, which are important. 

“Even I have played so many Tests, but with the pink ball, I also don’t have much experience. I do not think experience matters a lot when you are playing the one-off game with the pink-ball in a series.

“ As we keep playing more, we will get used to it. It is just Test cricket, we will have to play normal cricket. As a team, we have certain goals as a batting and bowling unit, we will stick to them. The next two Tests are very important for us, we will like to stick to our game plans,” he said. 

Veteran right-handed batsman added that he have fond memories of playing in Ahmedabad against England and added that they are looking ahead for the pink-ball Test. 

“It is a new stadium and pitch. Once we play more games here, we will get to know about the pitch. It is a beautiful stadium, we all are enjoying it here.

"We had a gym session yesterday and we had a net session today. I played in Ahmedabad in 2012, I have fond memories of playing against England here. We are looking forward to this Test,” he concluded. 

(ANI inputs) 


By Ankitjit Singh - 21 Feb, 2021

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