Cheteshwar Pujara’s brilliance with the bat was pivotal for Team India in ensuring a historic series win in Australia to become the first ever Asia to do so. The player of the series scored over 500 runs, with 3 centuries under his belt, while including a valuable 193 in one of the Tests.
But prior to that innings, Cheteshwar Pujara was not in the most pleasant of frame of minds as his father had to undergo a heart surgery. Never the less the newly certified wall of India indefinitely brought his ‘A game’ in front of the Aussies, and also expressed his relief after he got the news about his father being declared fit, and also thanked his wife for taking good care of his ‘old man’ in his absence.
“Firstly, I was assured by our family doctors before the Test that he would be okay. He needed the procedure because his heart rate was fluctuating. Dr Patil, who carried out the procedure, was in touch with me and told me to not worry. I was communicating with my wife, Puja, who was travelling with my father, regularly. I knew he was in the right hands and I could focus on the Test match.
“Mentally, I was relaxed because my father’s procedure was done. But I still had to bat well on day two because it was important to build on the start. I had to bat them out of the Test match – that was my goal and that is exactly what happened,” he remarked.
Having played a fair bit of cricket himself, Cheteshwar’s father has been a big source of inspiration for him over the years. He also shared about the incident when his father said that it was alright to fall just 7 runs short of his double hundred against Australia, as his contribution brought the nation to a match winning position, as ultimately that is what matters the most.
“Later that evening my dad told me that the double-hundred was just a number ‘You’ve done the job for the team. Don’t be sad. Seven runs does not mean much, but the job you have done for the team means a lot’. He is a special person in my life,” the specialist batsman added.
About the Author
Comes from the United Arab Emirates, is a sports junkie and a journalist, who has been following cricket as well as football since childhood. Played cricket in academies, school, and university levels. A fanatic follower of one of Europe's biggest ever football clubs - Manchester United.