Tiwary opined that the 33-year-old could do a good job at the top of the order with the bat. But after undergoing two knee surgeries, the Indian Test specialist is not considered as a fast runner between the wickets, something that is a prerequisite in the T20 game. That could act as a deterrent for franchises taking a punt on Cheteshwar Pujara.
Cheteshwar Pujara has given his name for the upcoming IPL auction, which is set to take place on February 18th. The Indian Test specialist last played in the IPL in 2014 for the Kings XI Punjab.
Speaking on Sportskeeda Live, Manoj Tiwary didn't seem too optimistic about Pujara's chances of getting picked at the auction. He said in this regard:
"It's not only about the batting skills in the IPL. Has to be everything along with your batting skills or bowling skills. There is no doubt about Pujara and his ability to bat. I'm pretty sure he will be successful provided he gets to bat at the top of the order. With the kind of batting style he has, he will be difficult to fit in the middle order slot."
Tiwary also opined that Cheteshwar Pujara's inability to swiftly move across the field is his biggest drawback.
"He had two ACL reconstruction in both his knees, so he struggles when he goes for a quick single or double. So franchise owners and their talent scouting team also consider your all-round abilities as well. So they see a broader picture rather than your batting skill," Manoj Tiwary said to Indranil Basu.
Cheteshwar Pujara has played 30 games in his IPL career, representing the likes of Kolkata Knight Riders, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kings XI Punjab. Pujara's career IPL average is 20.53, and he has a modest strike rate of 99.74.
Hanuma Vihari should get an opportunity: Manoj Tiwary
Hanuma Vihari is another centrally contracted player who hasn't got a suitor in the IPL. However, Manoj Tiwary believes franchises can take a punt on him and use him as a No. 4 batsman.
"As far as Hanuma Vihari is concerned, he should obviously get an opportunity. But if someone picks him, he has to make him bat at no four because he has not developed that game of finisher or a big hitter in slog overs," said Manoj Tiwary.
Vihari has played 24 IPL games in his career, all of which have come for Sunrisers Hyderabad, with his last appearance in the competition coming in 2019. He averages just over 14 and has a strike-rate of 88.2.
With both Pujara and Vihari considered as Test specialists at the moment, it remains to be seen if the duo will play in IPL 2021 or not.