Cheteshwar Pujara is honest about himself and his batting. The accomplished Test batsman, who is part of the Kings XI Punjab in IPL-7, has no qualms in admitting that he faces difficulty in switching to the slam-bang version of the game and needs to improve his skills within his limitations.
Speaking from the UAE over phone on Monday, Pujara, who scored an unbeaten 40 off 38 balls in KXIP's seven-wicket win over Rajasthan Royals, had no hesitation in accepting that he had miles to go as a T20 batsman.Less experience
Asked whether he faced any pressure while switching from Test cricket to T20, Pujara said, “Yeah, it becomes difficult because I don't have much experience in the T20 format.
“The only thing I am looking at is experience.
“Maybe, with more matches I will get the idea of how to go about the format. The start has been fantastic so far.
“There were two matches in which I played. It taught me many things.”Clear about role
Enjoying the experience of playing in the UAE, Pujara said he was clear about his role in a team packed with match-winners.
“I played my role (against RR). I was clearly told how to go about it. And it is a good thing that we have big-hitters like (Glenn) Maxwell, (David) Miller, (George) Bailey and Viru pa (Virender Sehwag).
“I have a role to play — to keep my wicket in hand — so that they can get the runs freely.”
However, Pujara was not satisfied with his contribution on Sunday night.
“I would not rate yesterday's innings as my best. In between I was trying to accelerate, but did not get the runs
“I was expecting... I think I am capable of doing better than what I did yesterday.”
Pujara intended to add value to his batting without changing his role in KXIP.
“I want to stick to the shots I play. What I need is a little more power and where there is the need get the odd boundary to accelerate the scoring.
“I do not want to be a flamboyant player like Chris Gayle or Maxwell or Miller, because that is not my strength and I cannot be like them.
“I have some limitations in my game. I want to utilise my game and do the best for the team.”
The Saurashtra batsman said with more exposure he would adapt well to T20.
“Experience teaches you a lot. When I started playing Test cricket for India, I was not matured enough. When I played more matches, I became better.
“I am still learning how to play T20s.
“I am a better ODI player now. I have a better role to play in ODIs.
“Playing with players like Maxwell and Bailey, I will get ideas and can become better,” said the 26-year-old.