India A vs West Indies A 2013: Cheteshwar Pujara declines to disclose Virender Sehwag's batting position

Cheteshwar Pujara, rather than practising in the nets, prefers to play a First-Class game or even a club game © Getty Images

Shimoga: Oct 1, 2013 

India A captain Cheteshwar Pujara kept his cards close to his chest and refused to divulge whether veteran Virender Sehwag will open or bat in the middle order when his side locks horns with the West Indies A in the second unofficial Test starting on Wednesday.

“I will not disclose it (if Sehwag is going to play in the middle order),” he told reporters when asked if Sehwag will bat in the middle order at pre-match press conference.

“You will come to know tomorrow,” India A coach Lalchand Rajput interjected.

On Sehwag’s injury, Pujara said he looks okay and a final call will be taken later. Asked whether Sehwag will go for a scan, the Indian captain said the team needs to speak to the physio about it.

On match strategy, Pujara said there might be a few changes.

Commenting on the pitch, Pujara said it looks a good and should help fast bowlers. “The outfield is very nice too,” he added.

Asked whether he would play three fast bowlers, Pujara said he would play them if there is dampness in the wicket due to rains.

“We will take a call tomorrow morning. See how the wicket looks in the morning. There might be a bit of rain. It looks cloudy,” he said.

On the opening options in the squad, Pujara said the team has an option in the form of young batsman from Kerala.

On his batting in the last game, Pujara said he was disappointed with the way he got out in both the innings but wants to focus on the ongoing series.

On Zaheer’s fitness, Rajput said he looked fitter and eager to perform.

Asked how much is about winning these games, Pujara said it is obviously important and youngsters get to learn by playing alongside Sehwag, Gambhir and Zaheer.

“It is an opportunity for them to share the dressing room with the seniors,” he said.

Pujara said they need not prove anyone but it is obligatory for them to prove themselves again.

“They have international experience and exposure. For them, this level is exterior option and it is a good opportunity for them,” he said.

On playing this game despite being the number one ranked Indian Test batsman in the world, Pujara said rather than practising in the nets he prefers to play a First-Class game or even a club game.

“I think, for cricket, it’s important to stay in touch with the game. It is a first class game. When you play at the international level, you still want to play a few first class games and feel confident. To improve your game, it’s important,” he said.

Asked was it the Board of Control for Cricket in India‘s (BCCI) decision or his decision to play this series, Pujara said it was a mutual understanding with the apex cricket board.

“Even I wanted to play,” he said.