Former India international Sarandeep Singh praised the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) for showing faith in Cheteshwar Pujara at the latest IPL auction. The 3-time IPL champions secured the services of India's Test specialist for INR 50 lakh, his base price.
Cheteshwar Pujara last played in the IPL for Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings) in 2014. Ever since then, the 33-year-old failed to find a potential suitor at the auction. However, CSK decided to take a punt on him this year.
Speaking exclusively to Indranil Basu on SK Live, Sarandeep Singh said Pujara deserved a chance and believed the India No.3 could do a decent job in the T20 format.
"Really happy, and I will like to congratulate Chennai Super Kings that they bought Cheteshwar Pujara. He deserved a chance. It might seem like he cannot play white-ball format well, but if you look at his strike rate in domestic cricket, it's around 70-80. He can bat and score runs. If I'm happy for someone (from this auction), then it is Cheteshwar Pujara. He deserved a chance," Sarandeep Singh said.
Cheteshwar Pujara is an established star in India's Test setup. However, he has long been ignored as a limited overs player. The batsman has played 5 ODIs for India, with his last appearance coming in 2014 against Bangladesh. It remains to be seen how he goes about his business for the Chennai Super Kings in the 2021 IPL.
Cheteshwar Pujara's IPL career at a glance
The 33-year-old last played the IPL in 2014 and featured only six times that season. He scored 125 runs at a strike rate of 100.80, with a high score of 40*.
Cheteshwar Pujara has played 30 games in his IPL career and has represented the likes of Kolkata Knight Riders, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kings XI Punjab over the years.
Pujara's career IPL average is at 20.53, while his strike is a modest 99.74. The right-hander has one fifty in his IPL career, which came in 2013 while playing for RCB. The Bengaluru-based outfit went on to lose that tie against Kings XI Punjab.