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ODI call-up was expected, says Pujara

Siddarth Ravindran in Rajkot

January 7, 2013

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Cheteshwar Pujara at practice, Ahmedabad, November 13, 2012
Cheteshwar Pujara has the opportunity to begin his international limited-overs career © Associated Press
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Over the last decade, the traditional route for Indian batsmen has been to make the limited-overs side and then, after success in that format, the Test team. Cheteshwar Pujara has bucked the trend. Long bracketed as a Test specialist, Pujara had to wait more than two years after announcing himself in the five-day version for his ODI call-up, despite a domestic one-day average that puts him second in the all-time list.

A top-order batsman, Pujara had to wait because of two major injuries and the presence of three senior players - Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir - who can open the batting, and the blossoming of Virat Kohli at No. 3. The ODI retirement of Tendulkar and the faltering form of Sehwag finally provided him the limited-overs opening.

Pujara also pushed his case by emerging as the highest run-getter in the Challenger Trophy, the only domestic one-day tournament so far this season. "I was expecting this call," Pujara said on the second morning of Saurashtra's Ranji Trophy match in Rajkot. "I did well in the one-dayers at the domestic level and when I went with the India A team to England (where he top scored with 332 runs in five matches). So I was quite confident that I could play the ODI format. I have proved that at the domestic level now it's a question of proving the same thing at the international level."

It isn't clear which spot in India's line-up will be available for Pujara, though. Ajinkya Rahane is set to take over as opener from Sehwag for the first three ODIs against England, and with Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni, the middle order also looks settled. "I'm hopeful of getting to play in the final eleven," Pujara said. "I may not get to do that in the first match but whenever. Not sure what the team strategy is but once I get to the team I will get to know what my role is. If given a chance, I'm very hopeful of doing very well."

Seen as a long-term replacement for Rahul Dravid at No. 3 in Tests, a format where Pujara describes himself as one of the mainstays in the batting, he says he doesn't feel any pressure to show he can thrive in the shorter versions. "I don't need to prove to anyone other than myself, I know that I can do it. I have done it at the domestic level, so it is just about playing the game properly than worrying about what people will say," he said. "If I'm not doing well today then tomorrow I can still do it, I'm young I have still got enough time to prove myself, I don't play cricket to prove anything to anyone."

Pujara says he has worked on expanding his repertoire of strokes over the past few years to include some of the more high-risk shots required in limited-overs cricket. In his previous Ranji match against Madhya Pradesh, he zipped from 150 to 200 in 17 deliveries and played the reverse-sweep and reverse-paddle. "Actually, I started playing the reverse a couple of years ago when the bowlers started adopting the negative tactic against me," he said. "Left-arm spinner bowling over the stumps and on to my pads and you have more space on the off-side and the chances of getting out are less so I have been working on that shot and I have had some decent success with it. That is the kind of shot you don't like to play often but if the situation demands it then you need to learn it."

Even in the Test format, many felt Pujara's selection was delayed, and the wait for the one-day call-up has been longer. "At times I was unfortunate also, because I had two injuries, I was out of the game for more than a year. When you are performing well and you get an injury, you have to start from the scratch, I believe that your concentration, your technique goes down a bit. That way I had to work a little extra to get into the team. Now I am happy because I am fit and doing well in Tests and now have got a call in the ODI format as well. Things are on track."

Siddarth Ravindran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Al_Bundy1 on (January 10, 2013, 17:21 GMT)

Pujara should play in 1st ODI at Rajkot - it's his home ground. Play Pujara instead of Gambhir or Rohit Sharma.

Posted by lokphy on (January 9, 2013, 23:34 GMT)

I would like to see following team for playing XI at present: Rahane, Gambhir, Pujara, Kohli, Dhoni, Yuvraj, Jadeja, Ashwin, B.Kumar, Shami, Ishant. (Raina and Yuvi both in same team not good) ==== After fitness of other players ==== Jadeja --> Tiwari (should work on bowling legspins) Aswhin --> some good world class spinner Gambhr --> Sehwag or some other good technical hitter Ishant/Shami --> I. Pathan Please publish....

Posted by Nampally on (January 9, 2013, 14:33 GMT)

@1st_april:Thanks for your generous praise of Pujara as opposed to @bumble23 comments!. Pujara hit 261 Not out in Ranji yesterday. I hope he keeps some of his runs for the ODI series against England.The word debut is defined in the oxford Dictionary as a person's first appearance in a particular role. Pujara has been in ODI since 2006. He may be making his debut for Indian Natioanal Team in that role now but not for the format itself.I have been a regular commenter in cricinfo columns for nearly a decade & always try to keep away from trash talk or incorrect comments.

Posted by AjberTheGangulian on (January 9, 2013, 11:31 GMT)

a class act like pujara is must. One day is not all hitting.... We need men other than ipl hitters

Posted by BrianCharlesVivek on (January 9, 2013, 9:19 GMT)

@Jose Puliampatty, Ashwin is atleast one who can take wickets, score runs and contribute. its a collective failure and you cannot single out ashwin for that. Why dont you try your Mr.Appam SthreeSanth??

Posted by 1st_april on (January 9, 2013, 6:40 GMT)

@Nampally .....thats more like it....Pujara is a class player....the solitary class player in the your test side....a player who can master test cricket can play 50 overs too...(vice versa is not true)....Trott / Amla / Clarke prove it....India might very well win this odi series.....since our 50 over squad batsmen haven't been exposed to your deadly spinners in the warm-ups....LOL....

Posted by johnathonjosephs on (January 9, 2013, 6:02 GMT)

With players like Pujara and Rahane, India should beat England. Hopefully it will be a whitewash, especially with the help of that new good all rounder Bhuvneshwar Kumar. I know Indian Cricket is going through a hard time, and so is the Sri Lankan Team. Best wishes to the Indian team to win the series. From a Sri Lankan fan. It is high time we put away our differences and act as one, including the Pakistanis and Bangladeshis. In the end, we are all the same. Long live Asia

Posted by joseyesu on (January 9, 2013, 4:33 GMT)

Gambir, Kohli, Rohit, Yuvraj, Dhoni, Raina, Jadeja, Ashwin/Mishra, Bhuvaneshwar, Ishant, Dinda/ SAhmed could be my choice. Sure Pujara wont get a chance in this series as players like Rahane and RSharma are queing up. Axing of Gambir is around the corner and i am wondering what Dhawan should do to get a place in 11?

Posted by VSing on (January 9, 2013, 4:04 GMT)

He is there to put GG on notice - perform or perish. Also Raina has not done much in the last series so Pujara could strengthen the lower middle order. It is about attitude and mood in the dressing room after serial defeats. Look at India A and Delhi who beat an English team in apparently full form. How does it look if the A and local sides defeat england which end up winning the ODI series.

Posted by TM on (January 8, 2013, 19:46 GMT)

My team for ODI's Pujara rahane kohli dhoni yuvraj rohit jadeja ashwin buveneshwar ahmed ishant

Posted by TM on (January 8, 2013, 19:43 GMT)

How will they fit Pujara into the team because i feel kohli is best at 3 as he can score big hundreds. The only way they can is if Pujara and rahane open

Posted by bumble23 on (January 8, 2013, 19:41 GMT)

@Nampally, pujara is yet to make his ODI debut. How on earth he has an average over 50 in both the formats. Please refer to the facts provided by many indian supporters on this blog, before lamenting other opinions.

Posted by Nampally on (January 8, 2013, 19:37 GMT)

@1st_april: In India there are 3 other format in addition to Test Matches. List A games are played Betwn. India A vs. visiting teams(like England's first practice match) or India A visits other countries to play similarly against there A teams. These are all ODI's. The First class games are all 3 day Ranji Trophy matches & then there are T-20's. Although Pujara makes his debut in ODI playing for India this year against England, he has been playing List A ODI games since 2006 & has played 61 matches so far. Pujara averages 58 in 9 Tests & 57 in 61 ODI List A matches. So he is no stranger to ODI format & has done equally as well as in Tests. Hence my comment about his average of 50 in both formats. By the way Pujara had averaged 87 against England in the recent Test series which you called "revenge series 4-0 ". Also one of the England fans called him "Over rated & arrogant guy" who can play neither Seamers nor Spin- after averaging 87 in 4 Tests!. How Polite swipe is that?

Posted by yezdi70 on (January 8, 2013, 19:00 GMT)

@1st_April : I believe Nampally is referring to domestic ODI average as you rightly pointed out that Pujara is yet to make a debut. I'd have thought that this was obvious....obviously it isnt for poms like you.

Posted by Al_Bundy1 on (January 8, 2013, 17:44 GMT)

It's time to drop Gambhir and bring in Dhawan in our ODI team. Why are Indian Selectors afraid of dropping senior players? When was the last time Gambhir played an innings of note? Recent performance, not seniority, should be the criterion for selection. We Indians give too much importance to seniority.

Posted by GrindAR on (January 8, 2013, 17:31 GMT)

Lets see, if BCCI is sarcastic enough to waste this talent.

Posted by AjberTheGangulian on (January 8, 2013, 17:23 GMT)

Hope India keep losing till Mr Gouthi and Mr Rohith expells

Posted by Alexk400 on (January 8, 2013, 17:11 GMT)

Pujara for me streaky player like kohli. Will be exposed in overseas. But he is mentally strong. He won't be dravid though. Now no sehwag to give fast start , its all about grinding until 45th over. You won't see india score 350 plus no longer. That days are sehwag days. Now it is more about fielding and bowling well with young group of bowlers.

Posted by 1st_april on (January 8, 2013, 16:26 GMT)

@Nampally " Pujara is the only Indian batsman who has averaged over 5o in both ODI & Tests"......isn't Pujara about make his ODI debut?.....so how can he average 50 already in that format?....LOL....no wonder you guys won the 'revenge' series 4-0......

Posted by Mitch1066 on (January 8, 2013, 15:00 GMT)

The odd way of doing it test team then odi but clearly this pujara looks top class player and will no doubt give England yet more headaches just hope England can give good account of ourselves against quality fifty over side as India clearly are.

Posted by NIKHILJOHRY on (January 8, 2013, 14:53 GMT)

Hope other youngsters are also included as we have to find a set combination that will play in the 2015 world cup.check out my blog on issues facinf indian cricket at http://nikhiljohry.blogspot.in/

Posted by Nampally on (January 8, 2013, 14:33 GMT)

@bumble23: Is it jealousy showing thru? You say Pujara is extremely over rated player - on what basis? He had an enormous average of 87 against your England team in the 4 match Test series. After scoring a double century & a century against your Swann, you still say he is incapable of playing Swann? What logic is that, Sir? He played Your pace bowlers Finn, Broad & Anderson with equal ease as he did against your spinners Swann, Panesar & Patel. You say he cannot ploay pace or spin? what is your rationale? Sad partisan attitude is only reason for such illogical comments. Pujara is the only Indian batsman who has averaged over 5o in both ODI & Tests. You don't have many in England side with this double.

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 13:03 GMT)

I am not sure that he will play,but if the openers fail for 2games on the trot which I am pretty confident about then he will get a game.But then there is a chance for sehwag to make a comeback after 3games as the panel have selected the team for the 3games only.If the players are rotated like in Australia we will have an extensive bunch of talent who are fit and hungry to succeed.Also the last game Ashwin bowled he got dip and spin from the surface.Hope he continues to try and spin the ball rather than bowling it flat on to the pads of the batsmen.The quicks look fine for now but even munaf and RP looked fine during their early days.So it is an early call I would say.But the young team makes us unpredictable and the fielding was top class in the pak series.Good luck India.Time to turn the tables

Posted by bumble23 on (January 8, 2013, 11:19 GMT)

Pujara is an extremely overrated player. When cricket pundits started to compare pujara with the great wall, many were laughing at those premature comments. To be honest he is a flat track bully and can neither play top class spin nor fast bowling. While playing swann he was all at sea, didnt even have a proper defence. Every time he played swann on the front foot, a catch to forward short leg was looming. Not even has he made his one day debut this arrogant bloke is clamining, that this call up was forthcoming.

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 11:07 GMT)

now indian cricket have a politics that why we are losing the match

Posted by moscowman on (January 8, 2013, 10:35 GMT)

Ajilnkya Rehane in his last 3 ODIs one each against Wet Indies,Sri Lanka and Pakistan has scored 0,9,and 4 runs respectively.Total 13 from 3 matches. What do you call this performance.He is an average. Don't rate him sky high. Hope he scores at least 20-30 runs. That is all. All the players are spoilt by IPL. Wind up IPL if you have to save Indian Cricket. Or we will see even lousier performances.IF rOHIT CANhave a place why not Manoj Tiwary. He is equally good or bad like Rohit.

Posted by constro on (January 8, 2013, 9:28 GMT)

India needs Pujara badly. It's being financially unfair to him, but still, I wonder if he can stay away from the IPL.

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 9:19 GMT)

It is up to selectors now to take up a bold decision to drop even Gambhir from the team and include Pujara in playing eleven. Gambhir has played enough for the Country and off late his batting form has been very poor. My team reads - 1. Rahane 2. Pujara 3. Kohli 4. Dhoni 5. Raina 6. Yuvraj/Rohit 7. Ashwin 8. Jadeja 9. Bhuvaneshwar 10. Shammi Ahamed 11, Ishant Sharma

Posted by vish57 on (January 8, 2013, 7:25 GMT)

Pujara can be either an opener or No. 3 to bring steadiness to Indian batting; with the current form, in reality Gambhir, Kohili and even Yuvraj does not deserve to hold their Place in Playing XI but we believe and live in reputation of players and their past statstical performance, people in bench continue to be in bench say Rahane or Pujara or even Manoj Tiwary. Only National team which do not change their team either it is a T20 or ODI or test cricket. Because of introduction few major changes in bowling we could find a Bhubaneswar Kumar or S. Ahmed or matured Ishanth. Selectors can call themselves selectors , had they brought either Murali Vijay or Mukund for Gambhir, Maneria for Yuvaraj. Top 4 failed in all 3 ODI, yet we persist except Shewag.Good Luck Team India; BCCI demonstrates political integration, so the cricket suffers.

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 7:23 GMT)

unmukt chand should also get a chance along with pujara and gambir can be dropped

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 7:18 GMT)

Tough for Dhoni to Choose Opening batsman between Rahane and Pujara..!!! I suggest take Rahane, Opening with Gambhir followed by Kohli ,Pujara,Yuvi,Raina dhoni,Jadeja,Make sure that 2 specialist Spinners in the Squad for England. Request you to give seat for Shami Ahmed and Undoubtedly Bhuvaneshwar Kumar.

Amit mishra or R Ashwin..?

Rahane or Pujara..?

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 5:54 GMT)

Hope pujara is in the playing XI, Hope dhoni and selectors give him time to settle down in the team. Now we are in re-building phase waiting to see him perform outside in SA, AUS, WI only then we can rate a batsmen. Good to see youngster given a chance fast bowler hope we have some one to compete with Gauti, Jadeja, ashwin, raina, and rohit sharma.

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 5:27 GMT)

Pujara was the opener in U19 WC in 2008....& he was the highest run scorer & the only batsman to score 2 hundreds in that....so he has the required technique to see of the new ball...as an opener I expect him to stay till 25-30 overs with 85 strike rate...we just need a good platfom at the opening...after that we have big hitters who can strike big in the slog overs can can use the batting powerplay to maximum

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 4:54 GMT)

His last few outings - 6, 16, 8, 26 - weren't great. Hopefully, he does well in the future. We badly need someone to stay at the wicket for longer time.

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 4:34 GMT)

My India XI for the first 3 ODI's are :::::::::::: 1. Gambhir 2. Rahane 3. Pujara 4. Kohli 5. Dhoni 6. Yuvraj 7. Ashwin 8. Mishra 9. Bhuvaneshwar 10. Ishant 11. Shami ................. I think if this eleven is iven a consistent run for all the 3 ODI's regardlsss of the performance,we would then be able to chop and change players accordingly ..... Also playing Ashwin as number 7 gives us proper 5 bowlers .... Unfortunately Raina does nt make it because of the team composition ...

Posted by landl47 on (January 8, 2013, 4:26 GMT)

Nampally, your defence of Pujara is stirring. However, I do have to point out that your comment that he averages 'about 52' in ODI is somewhat overstated. He hasn't played an ODI yet so his average is non-existent. Still, I'm sure he will take your comment as a prediction of what he will average when he has actually played some ODIs and be heartened by it.

Posted by littlemastero on (January 8, 2013, 4:22 GMT)

why is he giving such an interview even before making an impact in ODI? "I don't need to prove to anyone other than myself, I know that I can do it. I have done it at the domestic level, so it is just about playing the game properly than worrying about what people will say," is just much talk, he should learn from Sachin to show in batting rather than talking.. For someone who is yet to start the career in ODI, its just over confidence!

Posted by shayad on (January 8, 2013, 3:54 GMT)

pujara is nothing he is just another vinod kambli & he will never be the wall because No one can replace " Rahul Dravid" pujara is not 10 % of Dravid SA tour will be eye opner for pujara and his fan (( sometimes i m feeling someone just admire dravid to hate sachin )) indian people think Tendulkar = Kohli,Dravid =Pujara, Laxman = Rohit but kohli hav passion like sachin but not temprament pujara hav patients like dravid but not never die attitude rohit hav talent but not relaible like laxman so plz guys focus on cricket big mouth

Posted by Sooryan_Indian on (January 8, 2013, 1:28 GMT)

I think Pujara fits in very well in ODIs as a opener. along with Rahane, he can open the innings as Gauti is not showing any spark at the top. IF at all the white has to do somethig, it will be in the first 10-15 overs and Pujara has got the talent and technique to negotiate that and score runs.. SO PUJARA WILL BE HANDS ON IN ODIs. GOOD SELECTION. BUT USE HIM RATHER THAN WARMING HIM IN THE BENCH

Posted by   on (January 8, 2013, 1:14 GMT)

Players like Sachin, Laxman, Dravid are not easy to replace. They are living legends and we are missing them. Sehwag and Gambhir were lucky to be in the team with such great cricketers. Unfortunately they all got old together. Rohit needs to be sacked ASAP. He is the most over rated player to date.

Posted by AvidCricFan on (January 8, 2013, 0:59 GMT)

Let Pujara settle down in ODIs. We have not seen him perform in international ODIs. People here are getting too excited by his inclusion and it is understood given the team's performance in the last two years. Even Rahane needs to watch out. He has developed tendency to throw away his wicket by rash shots.

Posted by Red_Drag0n on (January 8, 2013, 0:55 GMT)

Don't know why Gambhir is getting these many chances. Just couple of days back match between India A vs England, Murali Vijay opened the inning and made 75 runs at the strike rate of little more than 100. Selectors didn't even considered him for ODI series against England. Its now time to move on from Viro-Gambhir era.

Posted by Ponsh on (January 8, 2013, 0:25 GMT)

Indian cricket is in serious decline. The batting suddenly looks weak and fragile; Dhoni has been carrying the team for too long and him Yuvraj are routinely left too much to do by a very poor top order.

Without Zaheer Khan, India's bowling is predictable and largely inept. Having said that Sharma seems to be rediscovering the form he displayed as a young bowler and Ashwin is quality IMO.

Pujara is a great talent who reminds of Saeed Anwar somewhat. That is the highest compliment i can give to Pujara.

Nevertheless, I think England are in buoyant mood and it would be a major upset (at the very least on current form) if India won the series. Indian fans need to start lowering expectations by a factor of at least 10

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 23:26 GMT)

Pearl 57 watch stastics bfor u talk tendulkar couldnt evn play wasim hit shoai for a6 wow is da al u guys evr gna talk about .see shoaibs record v india test matches head to head we are much ahead beating u in ur bakyard pakistans ahead. Loosing 7 test matches in a row then loosing at home call ur cricktrs batsman flat trak bullie .evn on flat traks u cant win against wrld class bowlrs like wa pakistani bowlrs jus did to u in ur home .so keep dreaming pakistan had a bad period there rise is cummin up again.u guys only win at home u cnt evn do da . Pakistans won evry we puting 8 batsman in a team calling urself best battinline up still cnt hit 200 wow wa a team

Posted by PMKKR on (January 7, 2013, 22:53 GMT)

I think these bunch of selectors are favoring too much to Gautam, Virat and Rohit. I think in the indian history Rohit is the most luckiest person who is getting so much chances. It is really shame that how come selectors are ignoring the other player and everytime repeting the mistakes. Ranji Trophy is going on and they should select some players who are at present in form. These three players are not scoring, give them the rest and let them play the domestic cricket and prove that they are worth for the selection. It's shame that many player's are knocking the door but not getting the chance. It will be not fare that Sehwag is dropped and selectors will picked again after three matches, let him prove in the domestic matches then only he should be given the chance. This is the high time they should rest Dhoni even and given the chance to some other wicket keeper to be reddy to play if suppose Dhoni is injured.I think overall selectors has not done fairness to some of the youngesters.

Posted by Nampally on (January 7, 2013, 22:07 GMT)

@Surya Kumar: Pujara's entry both into the Test Cricket & ODI has been delayed partly due to his Knee injury & mainly due to the Selectors overlooking him. He has an average of 56 in 7 tests that he played & also averages about 52 in ODI. He is the only Indian to have an average of over 50 in both the formats of Cricket. He is expected to bring a degree of stability to the team India with very shaky "Top 5 batting". He is the same age as Kohli - 24. Shikar Dhawan is 27 while Mukund is 23. B.Kumar & Shami Ahmad are both 22. If India opens the innings with Mukund & Dhawan or Rahane followed by Pujara & Kohli, it will be young Top 4. Yuvraj, Raina & Dhoni - as most dominant ODI bats can follow.That is the type of line up I was expecting the Selectors to select with talent at the top but experience in the middle.B.Kumar & Shami +Ishant are all <25. seamers + the spinners following them like Nadeem (22), Ashwin (25) & Jadeja(25) will be a great Young team.Why don't Selectors have this Team?

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 21:25 GMT)

Pearl 57 i think you been watchin india dominate pakistan in ur dreams 10 years u guys didnt want play us .scared of ws

Posted by farhan_arshi on (January 7, 2013, 21:10 GMT)

@StatisticsRocks- And yes, i would like to correct my comment and urs too.

He scored 97 runs in 5 innings... But at an average of 24.25. He was not out in the second innings of first test.

He performed well in first two tests. Failed in last two. But one should note that he didnt get a chance to bat in second innings of last test

Posted by FRRR on (January 7, 2013, 21:08 GMT)

Dhoni got the Man of the Match award to boost his morale ... :)

http://cricketnext.in.com/live/news/mom-award-handed-to-dhoni-to-boost-his-morale-report/70457-13.html

Posted by willmot on (January 7, 2013, 21:07 GMT)

@Dandy_s , More accurate & factual analysis reveals India;s bad patch lasting approx 40 years with a 2 year not so bad patch around 2009/10 though difficult to pinpoint exact dates because it was so short lived.

Posted by farhan_arshi on (January 7, 2013, 21:05 GMT)

@StatisticsRocks- His bat did all the talking when he was on the field. He was the second highest run getter in the series. U cant say that he failed by only looking at last five innings... His achievements in first two test should also be counted when looking at the whole series.

Likewise u will remove all the 619 deliveries Kumble bowled in tests which got him wickets and say that he was not a good bowler as he got no wicket on rest of the deliveries.

Its good he is confident. And guys do use statements like 'I dont have to prove to anybody but me' as a means to movitate themselves....

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 20:51 GMT)

the reason rohit got so many chances is because of the compliment sachin gave, when asked do you think any one will break your records, he said he would not mind if an indian did, and pointed to prospects like kohli and rohit, at the time rohit was doing well, now he is out of form

Posted by CaliforniaMysterySpinner on (January 7, 2013, 20:47 GMT)

I think Gambhir should be dropped from the test team for sure. However, I believe the first three ODIs should be his last chance to perform in this format. If he continues to fail like he has, then a change must be made. I am also tired of Yuvraj getting a free pass. If he isn''t going to be utilized as a bowler, as its harder to do with the new ODI restrictions, then he needs to go as he is not nearly consistent enough with the bat. Provided Gambhir fails, and given health, my Indian ODI squad would be as follows.

1. Rahane 2. Pujara 3. Kohli 4. Raina 5. Tiwary 6. Dhoni (c) 7. Jadeja 8. Irfan Pathan 9. Ashwin 10. B Kumar 11. Shami Ahmed. Bench: Dinda, Sandeep Sharma, Ishant, Rayudu, Nayar

Jadeja should be replaced with a 4th seamer in non subcontinental conditions, with Irfan, Ashwin, and B Kumar moving one spot up the order.

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 20:35 GMT)

i think pujara into odi squad is a tough decision by bcci. pujara is just into the test squad,young blood n yet to fix his position in test cricket. he hardly played 3 to 4 test series n he getting odi call so early is very uncertain. remember kohli is first into odi squad n then had his debut in tests. india has a lot of young blood with likes of shikar dawan,mukund who are performing very well in ranji cricket. not that pujara didn't played well but i say that the man who had made his debut in test cricket should be just limited to tests only until he is well nourished and certainly india with this performance in 5day cricket surely need 2 or 3 specialist batsman in test cricket....

Posted by StatisticsRocks on (January 7, 2013, 20:25 GMT)

@farhan: agreed he was the most successful Indian batsmen but 341 runs of the total 438 runs came from the double century and a century at Mumbai (2 innings). In the remaining 5 of the 7 innings he played, he scored only 97 runs @ 19.4. I agree he is still young and learning but my point is let his bat do the talking and I want him to take more responsibility on his shoulders.

Posted by perl57 on (January 7, 2013, 20:24 GMT)

@KawksEyeFocused, Pathetic. Considering the fact that Sachin has demolished Pakistan from 89-2012. Every world cup match was won by India. From Imran Khan to Akram to Shoaib Akhtar and any new kid on the block. Junaid Khan would have been dismissed for sixers by our kids Kohli and others had they had proper rest. Then the need of Sachin to dismantle jokers like Irfan and Junaid is laughable. I feel India has given Pakistan a gift. This is the time to enjoy for you guys as it may not come again. For next 100 years, you would still reel under the beating that India gave you guys.

Posted by Jose on (January 7, 2013, 20:16 GMT)

India is now a minnow in Cricket. Their legends have gone and will take some time for India to emerge as a quality team. Dhoni is the biggest burden India is carrying, however, both Indian media and fans conveniently ignore to realize this fact. He has transformed from world's best captain to worst ever captain. I am sure India will not even reach Semi-finals in 2015 WC.

Posted by StatisticsRocks on (January 7, 2013, 20:14 GMT)

@NutCutlet: Thank you for your reply. By the way I am Indian as was a bit shocked by Pujara's response. To me Pujara has the right technique, temparement to play test cricket/ODI cricket but for him to say 'I don't have anything to prove to anyone' is a bit of a stretch given that he has only played a handful of international matches. Accountabiliity is lacking in this Indian team and we Indians fans I guess are more forgiving. Further, it's not just him I am worried but the other youngsters representing the national team like Kohli's, UnMukts (future Indian star) etc. think they are bigger than the game. I watched U19 finals against Australia and the way Unmukt carried himself was arrogance personified. It's one thing to be aggressive but completely different to be arrogant. let the bat do the talking.

Posted by Dandy_s on (January 7, 2013, 20:07 GMT)

@hawkseyefocused one series win and suddenly pak is the best team in the world ...RSA will crush pak....ind just going through rough patch but we will be back with a bang...future is bright we are u19 champs and some good young kids wil be taking over soon.

Posted by Shan156 on (January 7, 2013, 20:02 GMT)

@Nutcutlet, remember Pujara's quote about England's batting after the first test in Ahmedabad - "England's batting is fragile". I thought it was a tad arrogant too but these are young players who probably are not comfortable talking to the press. They may have meant something and it may have come out differently. Of course, if any England player says something remotely to that effect, he will be pounced upon and crucified as an arrogant lad. Let's give Pujara the benefit of doubt here. He looks like a mild-mannered and confident person. The line that separates confidence from arrogance is probably very thin.

Posted by Devin48 on (January 7, 2013, 19:57 GMT)

Expecting India to win this series.....my XI would be Rahane Gambhir, Pujara, Kohli, Yuvraj, Raina, Dhoni, Ashwin, 3 out of (Ishant, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shami Ahmed and Dinda). Pujara deserves a chance in ODIs

Posted by farhan_arshi on (January 7, 2013, 19:44 GMT)

@StatisticsRocks- Pujara made 438 runs in India-England series at an average of 87.6 ...

You are saying that he failed??? He was the only silver lining in India's batting line up in that humiliating series loss.

Posted by Angry_Bowler on (January 7, 2013, 19:33 GMT)

He should prove his worth in this series, otherwise someone else will grab. He should not hope for a long rope that given to Nohit Sharma, in fact this guy got the longest rope I have ever seen in any International cricket playing country. Good luck and looking forward to seeing some good cricket in the coming series.

Posted by kc69 on (January 7, 2013, 19:33 GMT)

I would have loved if Gautam Gambhir was replaced by Shikhar Dhawan who is also a left handed opener.Wanna see Pathan brothers back in action.

Posted by Nutcutlet on (January 7, 2013, 19:27 GMT)

@StatisticsRocks: I see where you're coming from (and initially I had the same response as yourself) but I think our reactions to what we perceive as Pujara's arrogance or conceit may well be cultural. In the west, it is not done to respond to an invitation to represent your country with anything more than an expression to the effect that you hope you justify the selectors' faith.. looking forward to it.. Glad to be part of the team, etc, etc. I know it is too easy to leap to conclusions & thereby have an opinion about a player that may, once cultural matters have been explained, have been completely at variance to his real character & reaction to receiving the good news. Would some of our Indian posters please offer a note to help us understand Pujara's rection clearly? Thank you

Posted by Natraja on (January 7, 2013, 19:08 GMT)

Alexk400. Good to note that your sixth sense now says India will win against England. So your sixth sense agrees that dropping sehwag is going to Help team India eh? And you are still blaming Dhoni. You are one conflicted guy. lol...

Posted by HawksEyeFocused on (January 7, 2013, 18:55 GMT)

All my sympathies are with Indian team as Pakistan crushed them down to earth with a style in their own backyard!!! Sachin unlike Sehwaq was wise enough he took retirement before Pakistani bowlers could force him to retire !!! He knew that he wont face Junaid Khan, Irfan, Umer Gul and above all his old bunny SAEED AJMAL!!! Now according to my humble opinion India should invite Kenya or Zimbabwe for test and ODI series to improve their rankings and regain their form!!! I don't think with their current team they can even beat BD ,Ireland or Afghanistan!!! Mark my words... India in 2013 will lose matches against all the minnows especially Afghanistan and Ireland !!! BD is no more minnow!!!!

Posted by Natraja on (January 7, 2013, 18:28 GMT)

Pujara's selection is good move. Dropping Sehwag is a master stroke. He was a pathetic side in the field and was indulging in politics. He started it after the world cup. Drop Gambhir so that team can play as one unit. Sehwag and Gambhir have been bad influence on youngster like Kohli and Ishant Sharma and are responsible for low moral of youngsters. Unmukt Chand and Baba Aparajith from U-19 should be selected immediately to be with the team. They are the future of Indian cricket. Rituraj Singh, Pankaj Singh and Sandeep Sharma should be considered for pace bowling.

Posted by Alexk400 on (January 7, 2013, 18:27 GMT)

Sehwag dropped mainly dhoni wants to get rid of him. No one else. Simple really. Dhoni will get rid of any one who challenge his authority. For me that is fine if you win and even if you lose if you fight and lose i can accept.Lets see how india does against england. My sense say india may win against england.

Posted by sumusumit on (January 7, 2013, 18:19 GMT)

Its time for India to build d team for d Upcoming 2013 champions trophy in England n for d 2015 world cup in Australia..with d new rules coming in d ODI cricket which involves 2 new balls from both d sides..game is suited for players like Pujara..now i dont see Sehwag coming back into d Indian ODI team..If Gambhir doesnt perform in d starting 3 matches against England then Kick him also out of d team..he is struggling for runs from d past 1-2 years in all forms of cricket...New Indian team fast bowling line up looks good in Odi Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shammi Ahmed, Ishant sharma ..When Irfan Pathan gets fit then bring him in d team..he can replace Jadeja in seaming conditions of England n Australia...

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 18:06 GMT)

Good to see sehwag out of team. He dont deserve the place in side.

@InnocentGuy: WC final was the last good knock of gamabhir!! Good Joke. 7 times he crossed 50 in 18 innings. 2 centuries,2 90s and 88.

Everyone asking for gambhir to go.His stats for 2012 5 v Aus, 92 v Aus, 91 vs SL, 5 v Aus, 29 v SL,23 v Aus, 63 v SL,100 v SL,11 v BD, 0 v Pak,3,65,102,0,88 v SL, 8,11,15 v pak

He is one of unlucky guy to play for india. He made 97 in WC final and MOM goes to dhoni,He made 91 vs SL and who get MOM? He made 102 vs SL and who is MOM?His 100 was overshadowed by 108 by kohli. In india players like gambhir who worked hard to earn his place are never favoured(like VVS,dravid) He was taken out of vice captaincy for no reason. Yes he is out of touch and giving free wickets to opposition,but he only had one bad ODI series against PAK. He deserve one more series to get his form back. He is the big match/series player and most reliable. He should be sacked if fails against Eng.

Posted by tanxi on (January 7, 2013, 18:00 GMT)

Fantastic for Pujara. With the new regulations, its great to see a quality batsmen in the top order. India need someone to bat through innings with Kohli, Raina, Yuvraj and Dhoni playing around him. Ravi Jadeja looks in good form as well.

Dropping Sehwag could be good for him. Its demoralising when you keep getting out early. I still hope he is able to come back into the team, but only if he is in form.

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 17:55 GMT)

Bring back yusuf Pathan , nobody is even close . Drop raina and jadeja

Posted by StatisticsRocks on (January 7, 2013, 17:32 GMT)

No doubt it is a great move to include Pujara in the ODI team. But what's up with the attitude. I thought he was a level headed guy but guess not based on the kinds of statements he has made. 'I was accepting this call', 'I don't have to prove anything to anyone'. ....Make such statements after you have made significant contributions to the Indian team, be humble and gr8ful for the opportunity you have. Don't forget even you failed in the test match loss to ENG at home recently. Be humble like Sachin, Dravid, Laxman and many others who played for India. As always comments from @Dravid_Gravitas makes me laugh. Blind hatred towards Sachin w/o any substance. Guess what we, including you, already found a replacement for Dravid, but will never find a replacement for Sachin (not just cricketwise coz his records will be broken), but what he means to the fans around the world. Read the artice 'India's economic rise coincided with career of Sachin Tendulkar'. So many have benefitted off of him

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 17:29 GMT)

Pujara at 3 , Kohli,Yuvraj,Dhoni at 4,5,6 respectively. Raina at 7 or during the powerplay. An all rounder needed to unsettle this lineup.

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 17:25 GMT)

I really dont understand why Yuvraj and Raina still play in the same team and in the same middle order... Both have so much in common, excellent fielders, ordinary techniques, struggle against short pitch and swinging deliveries, unsuccessful test career, good pintch hitters... Why not drop one of them and play the other at 5 or 6 and play better batsman like Pujara, Rahane and if anyother batsman having good technique(I am not sure who is good technically in India) in the team and play dhoni, yuvarj or raina as pinch hitters

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 17:10 GMT)

Remember Sehwag on the 4th day of the Kolkata test.. After two matches it is you have told we have a replacement for Dravid, and we never said that.... Let us not jump the gun.. Dravid, Tendulkar, Ponting became what they were after some consistent performances in challenging situations and conditions..... All the best Pujara....... Cant understand why Sehwag was only dropped, what is the case of rohit & Gambhir??? After so many back to back losses, Still India's stars retain their places, amazing selection

Posted by indian_fight on (January 7, 2013, 16:54 GMT)

is tiwary still injured,rohit still in the squad

Posted by balajit on (January 7, 2013, 16:07 GMT)

Anybody who is technically sound as pujara will surely do well in ODI cricket. He needs to take a leaf out of Hashim amla who is now an excellent ODI player.

He should continue to develop his game improve his square of the wicket shots.He would surely be required on bouncy pitches of Australia in 2015.

Posted by Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on (January 7, 2013, 15:46 GMT)

Can't say how pleased I am to see Pujara in the ODI squad. He should come anywhere from no.3 to no.6 and play as the situation demands, just the way Dravid played. I strongly believe that Pujara is a much more evolved version of Dravid (no disrespect to my idol). Way to go Pujara! Way to go! You have all the support of your own fans and all Dravid fans. Go! Conquer! Make all of us and your idol (Dravid) proud by being unselfish and by always putting team's interests ahead of your own interests. Be our team's foot soldier, much the same way Dravid was. Best Wishes and Blessings to you Cheteshwar 'Rahul Dravid' Pujara!

Posted by Desihungama on (January 7, 2013, 15:28 GMT)

Pakistan's Azhar Ali had followed the same script. From Test to One-Day Team. Good luck Pujara.

Posted by dailycric on (January 7, 2013, 15:26 GMT)

In what universe is Suresh Raina more deserving of a starting spot than Pujara? Raina is only good for 30s and 40s; and he is only good in sub-continental conditions. Pujara is integral to any chance of a decent showing in the next World Cup in Australia. He has the technique to play in bouncy conditions; can ride out good bowling; and provide the fulcrum around which the strokemakers can play. Much has been made of Pujara being Dravid's successor in Tests - I think he can also be Dravid's successor in ODIs. Remember, Dravid was one of the very best ODI batsmen in world cricket as well, especially between 2002-5, playing vital roles for India at 3, 4 and 5. If we start playing people on merit, rather than because they are flashy / provide good marketing value for IPL / are Dhoni's friends, then there is no way Raina can even merit a place in the same room as Pujara. Pujara can be the next great batsman in world cricket; Raina is an overrated joke.

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 14:51 GMT)

I'm sure he will break the records of vivian richards and hashim amla....n virat kohli for sur...i think he might get 25 centuries in 100 matches....

Posted by SasiGladi on (January 7, 2013, 14:46 GMT)

I feel this move is to make Gambhir to realise his out of form, he developed a bad happit of speaking about his average and past achievments failed to realise that he is loosing his techiques...He should realise if you continously fail and not willing to correct you will forced quit (In India it will more time)....Media and many people shouting they should replace many players, replacing should be sone but not in hurry I feel opnly Shewag and Gambhir has to be replaced alone rest are fine in ODI even new finds of fast bowling were good....

Posted by moscowman on (January 7, 2013, 14:45 GMT)

Big scores in local matches doesnt mean a thing. Look at Jadeja. so many 3oo's and what has he done? nothing to write home about. And why is Rohit is still there?Who is his guardian angel. And why is gambir? Actually whole lot of batsmen haave failed and singling out Sehwag is smelly.Pujara is good for tests,probably. No one can reeplace our waLL-Dravid. No one has his techniques. Watch my words. Pujara,Rohit and all are not going to do anything great. Except Dhoni no one played well.That is a fact. Poor Sehwag is made a scape goat. Drop Rohit too if you are impartial.

Posted by InnocentGuy on (January 7, 2013, 14:43 GMT)

I'm so glad Sehwag is dropped. It was long due. Gambhir needs to be dropped as well. Those 2 have done nothing for a long time now to justify a place in the playing 11. The last good knock Gambhir played was in the WC final. It's been nearly 2 years since then.

Posted by Raj12345 on (January 7, 2013, 14:42 GMT)

Stop self advertisement. I am good follower of Puraja. I was very much shocked by looking how he played against Eng that too in Home series. Total failure other than one 200. Common you have to learn lot not just 1 or 2 games. I don't see any achievement by him so far. But he is solid batsman.

Better drop Raina and bring him.

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 14:38 GMT)

Ya- seeing how his mates are playing- he would have watched it with a smile- knowing his opprtunities are coming.

Posted by v_sharma73 on (January 7, 2013, 14:37 GMT)

I suppose we should give Pujara a chance in place of Ravindra Jadeja. I also fancy Dhoni coming up the order to bat at no. 3 as he has the best average (and also two big 100s) batting at No. 3 in ODIs. Also India should give Irfan Pathan a chance that gives you an extra fast bowler in the side then you can play three fast bowlers and two spinners and also strengthen the batting. Chances should be given to Manoj Tiwary. He has a good domestic record.

Posted by Nampally on (January 7, 2013, 14:29 GMT)

There are 2 batsmen - Pujara & Tiwary - who should be the heart of Indian middle order. Both are technically sound, have immense patience & determination to score. Both have been brushed aside calmly by the Indian Selectors or by Dhoni, who benched Tiwary for at least 10 matches.Here is an article in which Pujara is bursting with self confidence but still showing humility! He has the best averages in Tests & ODI's yet he is hesitating to say so. Pujara is in the same class as Cook, Clarke & Amla in batting consistency & is far ahead of any present day Indian batsmen. It is high time the Selectors & MSD give him his due especially in the weakest top 5 batting which India has right now.Kohli, Yuvraj & the openers have clearly shown that they cannot play good seamers like Junaid- who got Kohli thrice in 3 ODI's. Why is there so much hesitancy in getting Pujara in @#3 in such a poor batting line up? India also needs to go to Mukund & Vijay as NEW regular openers- the sooner the better!.

Posted by vsrajq8 on (January 7, 2013, 14:19 GMT)

iam very disappointed with sehwag drop from odi with england

Posted by Nampally on (January 7, 2013, 14:09 GMT)

It is sad to see that in all walks of our lives the guys who make most noise get ahead of others- squeeking wheel gets oiled first. Pujara was a school boy prodigy with runs galore & had many triple centuries in first class cricket too. He played a great innings of 72 in his test debut against the Aussies. But as a school boy he never got the same attention as did Tendulkar. As a over 19, Kohli made more noise & got ahead of Pujara as a regular in the Indian team. Pujara is the best & most complete batsman in India today. He never got the praise or fan fare of SRT or Kohli. After an average of 87 in the Test series vs. England (Incl. a double century & a century in 2 tests) he was calmly omitted from ODI squad as though India had strong batting. Total annhilation of TOP 5 of Indian batting Vs. Pakistan, incl. Kohli , has finally brought the Selectors to their senses. Pujara shines brightly like Sun & does his job brilliantly whilst other Cricketers mouth off to justify their failures!

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 14:01 GMT)

IT would be good if he opens ithe innings

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 13:37 GMT)

@LSmith: Drop Kohli? So you're saying that we shouldn't even try to compete against England? Kohli is our number 1 batsmen, at least in ODI's along with Dhoni. Drop him, and we might as well drop the whole team.

Anyway, Rahane for Sehwag. Straight swap, I guess. But Gambhir should be dropped as soon as possible. He's the one who needs a reality check.

Posted by Porky_PigTheToon on (January 7, 2013, 13:14 GMT)

All the very Best, Puajar. Although I think that you are only a test batsman !

Posted by ravikb on (January 7, 2013, 13:13 GMT)

I'm fed up of people who say Pujara is a replacement for Dravid in Tests. He looked like a club level player when he toured SA in 2010-11. Let him first play well in alien conditions. In Indian conditions, even Jadeja scores triple centuries.

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 12:50 GMT)

Being a Pakistani I follow Indian cricket since I follow pakistan and noticed that Indian are not bold to taking younge blood in game.they are very secusseful and tht series bhanshwer Kumer and shami Ahmed case

Posted by LSmith on (January 7, 2013, 12:42 GMT)

Pujara shld play at 3, dropping kohli for few matches for reality check is needed as well

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 12:37 GMT)

Irrespective of the batting positions assigned by the Captain & Co, BOTH Rahane & Pujara should be in the playing XI (for the entire series). And they should know in advance that they will be there for the whole series, irrespective of what happens in one or two ODIs. One vacancy is sure, as Sehwag is dropped by the selectors. Another vacancy should be created by NOT including Gambhir in the XI.

At least two more need some rest, for different reasons: (1) Kohli (who is temporarily out of form , in a big way, for reasons unknown), and (2) Ashwin whose 'words' are bigger than his 'deeds' and his radar for the line is mostly out of order, and the motor on his legs are not powered enough to chase the ball on fast out fields. Though not an Ajmal, he can get wickets.

Jadeja can keep the score board moving, even without big-hits by his fast running between wickets. Raina & Yuvi may go thru occassuional failures, but they form the core of the team for the next world cup. Rohit- BIG ?

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 12:20 GMT)

Why is the BCCI such a cry baby? Win or loss is a part of the game but seems the 'Brutality' shown by Pakistan against indian in india made them cry out loud and not wanting to play Pakistan in the future is a clear sign of that. Anyways Pakistan does NOT need your cricket. Our mission was to beat indians on their home wickets and we did so. Pakistan Zindabad!

Posted by Playfair on (January 7, 2013, 11:57 GMT)

I wish the lad well .. but Im not too sure if he will cut it in ODI cricket .. I would have gone for Ambati Rayudu

Posted by QingdaoXI on (January 7, 2013, 11:56 GMT)

Poor Openers, i was thinking that once our great middle order batsmen will retire this two will lead from front and help Indian team in transition, but the fact is that they need to go before than Tendulkar. For tests India should give chance to Rahane and Mukund as Right-Left hand combination. Sehwag gone, now at the end of upcoming series dump Gambhir. India should Play following XI: Kohli, Rahane, Pujara, Rohit, Yuvraj, Raina, Dhoni, Jadeja, Kumar, Shami, Ishant. When Irfan and Yadav along with Aaron are back then we will have good bowling attack. We need to worry about spinners, we dont have quality spinners. India should try to bring Chand also in squad as early as possible.Better save rohit for tests vs Australia if he flops there two in all matches dump him forever. Test XI. Mukund,Rahane, Pujara, Tendulkar, Rohit, Kohi, Kartik, Ashwin, Yadav, Sreesanth, Ishant/Ojha.

Posted by PhaniBhaskar24 on (January 7, 2013, 11:26 GMT)

I think Pujara is a class act...but however he needs to understand the pressure at international level particularly after a series loss with Pakistan..he may be played at No.3 given, he can anchor the ship for a while..that really eases pressure on both Yuvi, Raina who can find a trustworthy partner at other end & can free flow their shots. And the finishing touch can be given by Dhoni..though bowling department has to be settled...

Posted by Cricketfan101 on (January 7, 2013, 11:26 GMT)

Guys stop bashing Raina he averaged 30 pakistan series wheras guys like yuvi,gambhir and kohli averaged under 12

Posted by DataQue on (January 7, 2013, 11:23 GMT)

Will turn out be loser like others in the team!

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 11:15 GMT)

If Virender Sehwag has been dropped, same logic should also apply for Gambhir. Why people (including Gavaskar) are considering Kohli as future Indian Captain? He Has not been so consistent at test level. He has one century against last year and recently in Nagpur against Engalnd series. Before all, he was also flop in batting.

Last time selection committe made Yuvi and Zak as scapegoat and this time it was Viru.

Think about the Austrailia Series. Let' see how Our Great Loudmouth Spinner Ashwin (Sorry Batsman) performs against quality Batting. He must be happy for not bowling to Hussey, but still Clark, Watto, Warner are there.

I would really love to see how this younger performs against SA at SA against Morkel, Steyn, Philander & Company. Infact SA bowling is much much better than Aussie pace attack.

MSD gonna have hard time ahead in 2013. Best Luck for him.

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 11:08 GMT)

Perfect player to get a one-day call. The team needs a no. 3 around which the more flamboyant players like kohli, raina, sharma can play freely. He gives that stability to the team. Moreover, his sound technique looks good for matches outside the sub-continent. For me a permanent member for the one days and the test line up. Good Luck Pujara!

Posted by SilentVoyager on (January 7, 2013, 10:25 GMT)

@Cricket Man: Whatever you are saying doesn't make any sense. This article is about Pujara, not about When Sachin should retire or his honesty. You are talking completely off the radar here. I urge Cricinfo to not post such irrelevant comments. You can praise or criticize as long as you are being relevant to the article. I don't understand why people like you keep bringing Sachin into every topic. You just can't accept the fact that he is the most celebrated cricketer ever lived, can you?

Posted by KiwiRocker- on (January 7, 2013, 10:12 GMT)

C.Pujara needs to understand that international cricket is different than scoring easy runs on Indian flat tracks. This man struggled big time in SA against Dale Steyn and Co. International cricket is tough with some quality bowlers around. C.Pujara needs to follow path of VVS Laxman and Dravid instead of Tendulya and Kohli. He should let his bat talk instead of his mouth.Virat Kohli was touted as tormentor of Pakistani bowlers. He seemed to have conquered Saeed Ajmal's mystery. Poor man ended up scoring 13 runs in 3ODI's which was less than half what Umer Gul scored in two ODI's! Keep quiet, win the matches and be humble. That is why VVS Laxman was a true Indian batsman. A real classy match winner. Its a shame he was never rated or respect as much as he deserved.

Posted by rohan024 on (January 7, 2013, 10:05 GMT)

If i know my cricket, then Pujara is just not there to play international cricket. He may have scored tons of runs on Indian pitches, but if you observe it closely he lacks shorts. When he cuts both his feet are in the air, somehow he lacks power (like Gambhir) and it will be exposed in SA later this year. And moreover, i don't understand this "don't need to prove to anyone" theory. Are these players so full of themselves that they really don't feel like going out there and prove their talent to the world?

Posted by satish619chandar on (January 7, 2013, 9:56 GMT)

If accomodating Pujara is a MUST, then go towards the WWC type 11. 5 bats, one wk, Yuvi as all rounder(Can work better against England than it was against Pakistan) and Pujara at 3 and Virat at 4 leaving Yuvi, MSD and Raina as finishers.

Posted by satish619chandar on (January 7, 2013, 9:51 GMT)

I don't expect Pujara to play as a starter. Though i would love to see him there batting at 3. What it will do is, will dent a serious blow to the balance of the team. One of Yuvi/Virat/Raina/Jadeja with the first two almost certain to make it need to lend their place to Puraja. That leaving the slot to Raina/Jadeja. These guys are very good in the field and can add more value they add through bowling/batting. the struggling middle order begs for change without giving the name who to be replaced. We all know with a good start by top order how devastating Raina can be in the lower half innings and can't afford to lose out RJ. I would still continue with the same 11 that played in third ODI against Pakistan and let Pujara wait for injury to any of the current set.

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 9:44 GMT)

many cricket expert say sachin is honest player, but i don't remember a single moment that sachin leave the crease after the ball edgeing the bat and umpire has not given him out.

Posted by DEV_ME on (January 7, 2013, 9:41 GMT)

"............and with Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni, the middle order also looks settled. " - are you serious ??? Sehwag was only one problem, What about Gambhirs tentativeness, Raina and Yuvi's flirtacious behaviour with the pace bowling and Virats acute lack of form ...... Pujara can walk in with his held high in any of the positions .... though the best position is No. 3 for him

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 9:33 GMT)

sachin tendulker to retire from test cricket. he should learn from australian cricketer macgrath,warne, gilcrist,ponting andmike hussy.

Posted by madaboutcricketabhijit on (January 7, 2013, 9:29 GMT)

Indian selectors always needed a scapegoat and I am sorry to say, but Virender Sehwag was the one this time. Very little Gautam Gambhir, Suresh Raina and Rohit Sharma do to retain their place in the side. Simply, double standards. Viru is far better bet than the above three mentioned players. Pujara deserves the call, but not at the expense of Virender Sehwag. India still needs a match winner like him in the side and I will back him any given day against any given opposition. It could be the end of road for Sehwag in ODIs, but deep down somewhere I feel Sehwag will make a comeback in the Indian squad and these selectors will find no place on earth to hide their faces.

Posted by nthuq on (January 7, 2013, 9:27 GMT)

Surely Yuvraj has to go for this fellow. The way he's supposedly spoken, he sounds conceited, but it's not a bad quality to have if you don't go overboard as it keeps you positive. He's a good, classy bat and I feel if he fires, England, and later Australia in the test series will be done.

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 9:27 GMT)

sachin tendulker to retire from test cricket.he should learn from australian cricketer macgrath,warne, gilcrist,ponting and hussy.

Posted by anaveenaaron on (January 7, 2013, 9:23 GMT)

Indian selection has gone mad. Why is Rohit sharma still in team and the same goes to Raina? i'm happy Shewag is gone, he performs 1 in 10 matches whey are we keeping in the team, he has to be in the ranji, and earn a place in the national side. Rohit sharma another useless prospect and absolutely no commitment on the field.

Posted by Rags57 on (January 7, 2013, 9:23 GMT)

Not sure why Gambhir should be persisted with when you have a more solid player like Pujara. Gambhir has not ignited the stands with his fireworks even briefly and if anything, has struggled to middle the ball. We should try a Kohli and Rahane opening combination and have Pujara come one down. When Umesh Yadav recovers the final place would be a toss up between him and Shami Ahmed.

Posted by Front-Foot_lunge on (January 7, 2013, 9:15 GMT)

Such a talented up and comer. India's travails may be over sooner than most England fans, like me, would believe possible. With England being in the doldums of cricket for over 20 years and a record not much better than Bangladesh, its hard to think a side could regenerate quickly. However, sides like India and Australia regularly win or compete in the finals of the youth world cups. England barely features. Which goes to show there is little talent coming up through England's ranks. We'd kill for someone like Pujara...perhaps if he was south african we could shake his ancestral cupboard and see if any old english skeletons fall out?

Posted by baskar_guha on (January 7, 2013, 9:13 GMT)

Pujara should bat at #3. Kohli should open. For the upcoming ODIs, this is what I would suggest: Kohli, Rahane/Gambhir, Pujara, Yuvraj, Dhoni, Raina/Rohit, Jadeja, Ashwin, Kumar, Sharma, Ahmed. Three players whose fielding is a liability are Gambhir, Ashwin and Sharma - that has to be a factor in small Indian grounds.

Posted by Pathiyal on (January 7, 2013, 9:06 GMT)

its time team india has to get rid of the seniors and groom the youngsters. may be they will fail once or twice but they will learn from their mistakes.

Posted by Aroop on (January 7, 2013, 8:41 GMT)

Very disappointed with comments "with Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni, the middle order also looks settled." Is the middle order really settled especially with short pitched stuff and the 2 players in between the 4 names?

Posted by indiasupbangalore on (January 7, 2013, 8:41 GMT)

In my opinion pujara has to open along with rahane, just keep gambhir to warm up the benches. But again this is indian team and it is selectors, will have horrible decisions.

Posted by SamRoy on (January 7, 2013, 8:38 GMT)

Against England drop Gambhir and play Rahane, Pujara and Kohli as the top 3. That way we might get a solid start in swinging conditions (It will swing in winter).

Posted by   on (January 7, 2013, 8:35 GMT)

Pujara has earned his place by performance and not by reputation.

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