Cheteshwara Pujara loves Test cricket, he likes digging in, wafting his bat out of the way and leaving deliveries outside the off stump. He does not mind not scoring runs for hours together, he likes to bat, Test cricket way and hence, when he says that winning the ICC Test Championship would be bigger than winning the T20 or ODI World Cup, no one should bat an eyelid or figure out ways to argue. “… when you become Test champions, I would say it is more than winning an ODI or a T20 World Cup. The reason is this format is the ultimate format,” Pujara told India Today.
“If you ask any great cricket player from the past, even the present cricketers, they would say that Test cricket is the most challenging format of this game. And when you become world champion of Test cricket, there is nothing like it.”
India are unbeaten in their World Test Championship campaign as they have won all seven matches they have played thus far. Pujara says that apart from the advantage that comes from the early lead, India are one of the better teams away from home and this should work to their advantage.
“Most of the teams have done well in their home conditions but when they go away, they are always challenged. Especially about the Indian team, we have managed to do well overseas. We have now started winning series overseas,” he said.
“So, that is the biggest advantage this Indian team has now. Talking about the Test championship, any team who gets into the final, they have to work really hard for over a period of two years and they have to win not just at home but also they have to start winning away from home.”
As per the right-hander, the Test championship has brought greater significance to each Test match and this will help the format sustain itself in the longer run. “To sustain Test cricket, ICC (International Cricket Council) had to come up with something and all the cricket playing nations have to think about Test cricket. To sustain Test cricket, I think this is one of the best platforms players can ask for. And there is something to play for in each and every Test match. You won’t see many draws now,” he said.