India vs Australia: India’s tour of Australia 2018-19 will be remembered for Cheteshwar Pujara’s grit and patience. Pujara amassed a mammoth 521 runs in the four-match series at a whopping average of 74.42. Pujara was instrumental in guiding India to script history in Australia by becoming the first Indian team to win a Test series on their soil. The Saurashtrian just kept batting and batting, without ever getting bothered if the going was slow. That wore down the Australian bowlers who tried to get Pujara caught up in banter. But that was not to be as Pujara kept his cool and kept piling on the runs. The hosts tried every trick in the book to distract him, but they failed as India won the series 3-1. Pujara not only emerged as the leading run-getter of the series, but also bagged the Man of the Series.
In an interview with the Times of India, Pujara spoke about the memorable innings and the measures taken by the Aussies to get under his skin. The Nathan Lyon comment, ‘Aren’t you bored of batting now? You’ve scored so many runs’, made headlines during the series. When asked about such moments, Pujara revealed how Tim Paine’s men were laughing at their own taunts.
“There were many instances but I remember the first Test. Nathan Lyon and Tim Paine tried to sledge me. They almost felt that the game was over when we were 40 for four, they thought that we’ll be bowled out for 150-160. And even later on, I think in the third or fourth Test, they were trying to sledge me but at the same time they started laughing in the end. Lyon came and told me: ‘Aren’t you bored of batting now? You’ve scored so many runs’,” he revealed.
“Yes (when asked whether Lyon’s sledge was the best). I never thought that he’ll say such a thing. And then when we were playing against Australia in the third Test in Ranchi in 2017, one of the players came and told me ‘Now if you don’t get out, we’ll have to ask for wheelchairs.’ I was batting on 170-plus. That’s the best sledge I remember from an Aussie player,” replied the 31-year-old.
India will now host Australia in an upcoming limited overs series, starting February 24.