Cheteshwar Pujara's approach to game similar to Rahul Dravid: Lalchand Rajput

India A coach Lalchand Rajput feels during India A’s recent tour to Caribbean Cheteshwar Pujara showed great application and hunger Getty Images

By CricketCountry Staff

Mumbai: Jul 10, 2012

India A coach Lalchand Rajput has lavished praise on the talented batsman Cheteshwar Pujara and likened him to the former Indian captain Rahul Dravid.

Rajput feels, during India A s recent tour to Caribbean the right-handed batsman showed great application and hunger.

“(Cheteshwar) Pujara is sincere and really hardworking just like (Rahul) Dravid. He wants to keep batting and work on his weaknesses. There are a lot of similarities between him and Dravid. Like Dravid, Pujara hates to give away his wicket. His positive approach and attitude will definitely take him miles,” said Rajput.

Post Dravid s retirement, there have been many contenders to fill the No 3 spot in the Indian team, and India A captain Pujara has been one of the frontrunners.

But despite boasting the likes of Rohit Sharma, Abhinav Mukund, Shikhar Dhawan, Ajinkya Rahane et al, the Indian team struggled in West Indies and lost the unofficial Test series.

The coach however saw a spark in Pujara which reminded him of Dravid who was known for his astute batting and positive attitude.

“(Cheteshwar) Pujara is sincere and really hardworking just like (Rahul) Dravid. He wants to keep batting and work on his weaknesses. There are a lot of similarities between him and Dravid. Like Dravid, Pujara hates to give away his wicket,” said Rajput. “His positive approach and attitude will definitely take him miles,” Rajput told DNA newspaper on Tuesday when asked whether Pujara is ready to replace Dravid in the Test squad.”

The former Indian coach further added that the urge to make a comeback to the Indian team. He was quoted by DNA as saying, “Since he (Pujara) had played for the country earlier and was out due to injury, he was determined and wanted to prove a point.

“He looked hungry to make a comeback. His application was superb, had good temperament and was technically sound. It was a very good performance and in a package. He grabbed the opportunity with both hands.”

Apart from good performance in the recent tour to West Indies, Pujara has a good first-class record to back Rajput s claims.

The batsman has scored 14 hundreds and 21 fifties in the 64 first class games, garnering 4,639 runs.