I have to learn how to sledge...I am still not very good at it.


Hello and welcome to Walk the Talk. I am Shekhar Gupta at Bangalore's Chinnaswamy Stadium and my guest today is not just the most talented rising new star in Indian cricket, but a match-winner. And Cheteshwar Pujara, you know what is different about you? You are a Test match-winner.

Thank you.

A very rare commodity.

I love playing Test cricket. Since childhood I have been scoring a lot of runs in domestic cricket and even at the junior level. I love scoring big runs in the Test format.

Just 13 Tests and you are already telling us that you love the long innings.

Because I have got two double hundreds. And as a batsman I don't like to get out, so you tend to spend more time at the crease. As I said earlier, it's coming from my junior cricket because I have got a triple hundred on debut at the under-14 level. Even in the Ranji Trophy, I have got a triple hundred.

But the difference is, unlike many others who play the long innings, you are very productive at the crease.

Once I cross 50 and 100, I gain a lot of confidence. Then, I believe, my natural game takes over. I don't need to make any extra effort to play my shots. That is the reason I have been successful at scoring at a higher strike rate.

By watching your stats, you can see a pattern emerge that your subsequent 50s are faster than the earlier ones. So, the longer the innings, the more productive does your stay become, unlike many others who'll get the first 50 quickly, or the first 20 slowly then get to 50 quickly and then slow down to get a 100.

... contd.

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