Cheteshwar Pujara, who has not played competitive cricket since March, trained hard in the net session here on Thursday to prepare for the next month’s Test series against Australia, in which he looked comfortable in front of the fast bowlers. Pujara batted on both the ‘side net’ and ‘center strip’ in which he faced net bowlers Ishan Porel and Karthik Tyagi as well as Umesh Yadav and Ravichandran Ashwin.
Most of the players from the Indian team played in the Indian Premier League, but the regulars of the Test team Pujara and Hanuma Vihari joined the national team bubble in the UAE before reaching Australia. Pujara was instrumental in India’s historic win in Australia two years ago and his role at number three will be crucial, especially after Virat Kohli’s return to home for the birth of his first child after the first Test.
Pujara played his last match in the Ranji Trophy final. At the same time India’s throwdown specialist Raghu has reached here and is in quarantine before joining the team. He could not leave with the team’s other support staff after coming to Kovid-19 positive. A BCCI source said, “They will have to go through a 14-day quarantine as per local government guidelines. After that he will join the team.