Cheteshwar Pujara has said he and the Indian batting lineup are trying their best to cope with the fiery Australian bowling. He rued his dismissal on Saturday but hailed Pat Cummins for bowling the 'best ball of the series' which he had no answer to.
Pujara looked like he had regained his mojo after a string of low scores in the series. The number three batsman, with his attritional approach, made a fighting 50.
However, soon after Pujara reached the milestone, Cummins bowled a crackerjack delivery which rose viciously from a good length to take the edge of Pujara's bat. Tim Paine completed a simple catch.
Talking in the press conference after the end of the day's play, Pujara said he will have to focus on batting in his own way.
"The way I got out today, I have to accept that. I could not have done anything better, I would rather focus on the things I need to do as a batsman. I just have to bat in the manner I know to bat, even as a batting unit, you need to build partnerships and bat well as a unit," said Pujara.
"We are trying our best, but sometimes Pat Cummins has a better idea, sometimes he was bowled some of the unplayable deliveries, for example, the ball which I got, if there was any other batter, I felt that was the best ball of this series, sometimes you have to accept it, we are trying our best as a batting unit. It is not just about him, it is important to bat well as a unit," he added.
Saturday's knock was the slowest half-century of Pujara's Test career and the batsman took a truckload of flak for it. He was criticized for a 'reactive' approach which supposedly put pressure on his partners.
"I was really confident while batting today" - Cheteshwar Pujara
India crumbled for just 244 on the flat Sydney track. After Cheteshwar Pujara's wicket, India's lower order were skittled for under 50 runs and the visitors conceded a significant 94-run lead. Pujara said despite the fact that he got out at the wrong time, he was confident during his stay on the pitch.
"I have got out against him four times but some of them were really good balls, we need to respect that, overall I am confident about my batting, I would rather focus on the things I need to as a batsman rather than put too much pressure on him getting me out. The way I was batting today, I was really confident," he said.
Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne constructed an unbeaten 68-run partnership by the end of day's play. They are threatening to take the game away from the Indians and it will require a momentous effort from a depleted bowling lineup to stop them.Published 09 Jan 2021, 15:49 IST