COLOMBO: Cheteshwar Pujara has never been known for sledging opposition batsmen but he is not averse to the idea if it helps the bowler.
“I do make a lot of noise while playing FIFA. And these days you see I am making a lot of noise on the field. I am learning the tricks of sledging. If you need to sledge a particular batsman, you need to sledge. It helps the bowlers,” Pujara said while interactive session with Ajinkya Rahane for bcci.tv.
Talking to each other post their 217-run stand, which helped India win the second Test here and therefore the series, the pillars of India’s batting in the longest format gave an insight into their mindset.
People perceive Rahane as a reserved individual, which he feels he is not.
“I am not as reserved as people think. I like to talk, in fact I do talk a lot with my wife,” quipped Rahane during the chat with his team-mates.
While they even sledge when the need arises, both Rahane and Pujara go about their business in a calm and composed manner. That nature is something that helps bring out their best on the field.
“I have been a quiet person since childhood, maybe it is because of my family background. But staying calm helps a lot on the field, especially in Tests.
“However, I am not as reserved as I used to be,” said Rahane before pointing towards Pujara.
Their conversation then headed towards the emphatic win in the second Test with both playing a key role in taking India past 600. “It was not easy with the ball turning around (playing on a track that offered turn and bounce). I wanted to take my time initially. I was visualising (in the dressing room) how to play against the spinners. I wanted to unsettle them,” said Rahane.
Rahane also threw light on becoming an improved slip fielder. “I remember dropping a lot of catches in my early days. It hurt me and I started working on that aspect. Last time we came to Sri Lanka, I decided take 100 catches in every session and I am still working on my catching,” he said.
The chat ended with Pujara talking about his penchant for the big hundreds. “I remember scoring a 300 in my first U-14 match. It all started from there. I always felt if you want to win four-day games, you need to score big runs to win it for your team. A 100 is not enough,” Pujara signed off.