While Rishabh Pant (89*) and Shubman Gill (91) were the star performers for India at the Gabba, Cheteshwar Pujara also played a highly significant part in the historic Brisbane triumph. His fighting knock didn't go unnoticed as noted Indian politician Shashi Tharoor praised the right-handed batsman's grit and determination.
Cheteshwar Pujara batted for 211 balls and occupied the crease for 314 minutes to put together 56 runs. During the course of his innings, he took blows all over the body as Australia peppered him with short deliveries.
Speaking to Sportskeeda’s Indranil Basu in an SK Live session on Facebook, Tharoor saluted Cheteshwar Pujara's resolve.
“In the fourth Test, there is (Cheteshwar) Pujara taking hit after hit after hit on all parts. And, at one point I had thought he had broken a knuckle or a finger. Remember the time when he was in such visible agony that he collapsed on the ground. And yet he carried on,” Tharoor said.
Applauding the determination Team India displayed Down Under in the absence of several key players, Tharoor added:
“The guts and gumption these guys showed. I am just in awe of the spirit of this team.”
Cheteshwar Pujara plays his own game and he's good at it
Following the first session of play on Day 5 at the Gabba, there was massive backlash for Cheteshwar Pujara on social media. He was batting on 8 from 90 balls, scoring at a strike rate of 8.89.
At the other end, youngster Shubman Gill had brought up his second fifty of the series, and was unbeaten on 64 off 117 balls. The popular sentiment on Twitter was Cheteshwar Pujara was playing for a draw, while Gill was going for a win. It wasn't true of course, as India’s No.3 was only walking the talk.
Pujara brought up his half-century in 196 balls, thereby breaking his own record, which he made in the Sydney Test. He scored 50 off 174 balls in the first innings at the SCG, and took 170 deliveries to reach his fifty in the second.
While in Sydney India managed to pull off a heroic draw, they triumphed against all odds in Brisbane. As a result, Cheteshwar Pujara was spared some of the brickbats, when all he ever deserved was kudos!