In a close Test match, a small contribution can have a heavy impact. But for India in Adelaide, the difference was Cheteshwar Pujara, who made 194 runs in the Test, with typical grit and determination. A massive contribution, massive impact.
Both captains thought the same.
“Pujara was probably the difference between the two sides,” Australia captain Tim Paine said. “It’s what you want from your top 5-6 batters, hundreds and a lot of balls into our bowlers as well. He made us work very hard to get him out and we can take a lot from that for our batting group.”
What did Virat Kohli say?
“We were down and out at lunch on day one. His belief, grit and determination kept us in the game, he brought us back beautifully,” Kohli said. “The game was poised equally on day two. We knew runs on the board, their position playing at home, they’ll obviously be a bit tentative and we cashed in on that.
It’s been a great first match at the Adelaide Oval! Thank you so much for your wishes. Really delighted with the way we played as team and put up a great fight! On to the next one now! #AUSvIND pic.twitter.com/xIEe8shsBO
— cheteshwar pujara (@cheteshwar1) 10 December 2018
“Any lead would have been gold and we built on that with a couple of partnerships in the second innings, particularly Pujara and Rahane. When they bat together like that they are our most solid pair. They gave us that safety for the bowlers to go out and get ten wickets. It took grit and determination from both of them to put us past Australia where it was hard for them to chase that total down.”
What about India’s fast bowlers?
“Super proud. To have four bowlers take 20 wickets to win the Test is an outstanding feat, something we haven’t done in the past in Australia,” Kohli said. “That’s why we are very proud of our bowlers.
“They are at their peak, all of them together and it’s something that we as batsman look at as an opportunity to put in good performances. We will be, in every Test match, gunning for a result. It’s up to our batsmen to step up in this particular series and Pujara and Rahane particularly showed that.”