In a match where run-machine Virat Kohli scripted history by becoming the fastest player to complete 25,000 international runs, veteran Indian batter Cheteshwar Pujara achieved a massive feat as the Test specialist recorded his 100th appearance in the longest format for Team India. Joining the likes of Kohli, Sachin Tendulkar, Kapil Dev, Rahul Dravid and Anil Kumble, premier batter Pujara became the 13th Indian cricketer to feature in 100 Test matches.
Pujara achieved the special feat in the 2nd Test of the high-profile Border-Gavaskar Trophy between India and Australia at Delhi. Known for his batting vigils in the longest and oldest format of the game, Pujara has been India’s No.3 batter in Test cricket for several years. The veteran batter recently turned 35 and the senior cricketer is one of the few batters who are indispensable to the Indian Test side.
Sharing his perspectives on YouTube before the beginning of the third Test match among India and Australia, previous Indian opener Wasim Jaffer named star hitter Shreyas Iyer as an optimal replacement of veteran Pujara. Shreyas Iyer got back in the game to the Indian Test side in the second match of the four-match series against Australia.
“I think Shreyas Iyer is the best option to succeed Cheteshwar Pujara at No.3. He has batted at No.3 for Mumbai and he is an attacking batter. If someone can come in at No.3 and score intently, putting the bowlers on the backfoot will do India a lot of good. Pujara has been brilliant at No.3,” Jaffer said.
Pujara, who made his Test debut against Australia at the M.Chinnaswamy Stadium in 2010, has accumulated 7,052 runs for India. Pujara is 69 runs away from completing 2,000 runs against Australia in the longest format of the game. The premier batter will become the fourth Indian batter to achieve the special feat against the Baggy Greens in Test cricket.
Pujara’s teammate Iyer sealed his place on the Test side after an impressive 2022 season. Iyer made his Test debut against New Zealand at Green Park in 2021. The Mumbaiker has amassed 640 runs for India in 8 Test matches. Averaging almost 50, the 28-year-old has smashed a century and five half-centuries in his much-pressing Test career. India will meet Australia in the 3rd Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy at Indore’s Holkar Cricket Stadium on Wednesday.
Source: Hindustan Times
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