Mohammad Rizwan reveals how Cheteshwar Pujara’s advice worked like magic for him in County Championship
Pakistan wicketkeeper-batter Mohammad Rizwan has recently opened up about sharing the change room with India batter Chetehswar Pujara and learning a few golden tips from the Test specialist. Rizwan and Pujara both are currently in England playing the ongoing County Championship Division Two 2022.
Rizwan is enjoying his maiden County Championships stint with Sussex, where India’s veteran batter Pujara is also a part of the side. Notably, Pujara has been one of the most consistent batters in the division so far. The right-handed strokemaker has scored 717 runs in four matches for Sussex so far and is currently the second-highest run-getter in the season.
During a match against Durham, the duo of Pujara and Rizwan formed a 154-run stand where Pujara went on to smash a double-hundred (203 off 334 balls), while Rizwan scored a scintillating half-century (79 off 145 balls).
However, before his knock against Durham, the Pakistan wicketkeeper-batter looked a bit inconsistent. Prior to his 79-run display, Rizwan had scores of 22, 0, and 4 to his credit in three innings.
Rizwan has revealed how Pujara helped him regain his form in the red-ball format. The 29-year-old mentioned he sought advice from the Indian star, who came up with some valuable suggestions and explained to him the difference between playing in the sub-continent and in the English conditions.
“With Pujara, I had a chat with him after I got out early. He told me a few things, and one of them was to play close to the body. And as everyone knows, we have been playing white-ball cricket consistently over the past few years and play a bit away from our body. You don’t play very close to your body in white-ball since the ball doesn’t swing or seam as much,” Rizwan told Cricwick.
“So early on here, I played away from my body and got out twice similarly. Then I went over to meet him in the nets, and I remember him saying that when we play in Asia, we force the ball to play the drive. Here, we don’t need to do that. And we need to play close to the body. I have played white ball cricket consistently. So these are the things which he told me, and whatever he learned from me, he can tell [laughs],” he added.
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