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  5. Cheteshwar Pujara leaves Mohammed Rizwan impressed, Pakistani reveals meeting details at Sussex

Cheteshwar Pujara leaves Mohammed Rizwan impressed, Pakistani reveals meeting details at Sussex

The duo recently forged a 154-run stand against Durham with Pujara slamming a double century and Rizwan hitting a half-century.  

India TV Sports Desk Written by: India TV Sports Desk New Delhi Published on: May 11, 2022 17:40 IST
Pujara
Image Source : TWITTER

Cheteshwar Pujara and Mohammad Rizwan. 

Pakistan wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Rizwan has opened up on his friendship with India Test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara and said that he wishes to imbibe qualities like concentration and focus from the Gujarat-born cricketer. 

Both Pujara and Rizwan are in London representing Sussex with the Pakistani playing his maiden County Championship. The duo recently forged a 154-run stand against Durham with Pujara slamming a double century and Rizwan hitting a half-century.

Pujara, who was dropped from the Indian team is enjoying a brilliant stint amassing 717 runs in four matches - two centuries and as many double centuries.  

Heaping praise on Pujara, Rizwan said that he wishes to have the focus and concentration levels like that of the Indian. "He is a very nice and loving guy. And his concentration and focus too. If you get a chance to learn something, you should do it," Rizwan told Cricwick

"In terms of concentration levels and I told this to the coaches here too. In my whole career, the players with the most focus, and concentration are Younis bhai, Fawad Alam and Pujara's. Pujara is second on my list and Fawad Alam on three in terms of pure concentration and focus. I rate these three players very highly," he added. 

India-Pakistan Rivalry

Speaking on their on and off-field partnership with social media buzz around the India-Pakistan rivalry, the Pakistani said, "As far as myself and Pujara are concerned, I didn't feel anything strange on the lines of India-Pakistan rivalry. And hopefully, if you ask him, his answer will be the same as mine. Although I do share a laugh with him and tease him (laughs) and everyone in the team knows this.'' 

Crucial Advice

Rizwan also approached Pujara for technical advice on how to bat for long periods in red-ball cricket after he was dismissed early. 

"In terms of the focus and concentration levels, there is a time when that starts dropping low. I will try to figure out how these three players have so intense focus and concentration. I keep on talking with Younis bhai, I couldn't talk much with Fawad recently on this. And 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."  

Rizwan has been playing a lot of limited-overs cricket and interaction with Pujara helped him understand how to approach Test cricket. 

"So early on here, I played away from my body and got out twice in a similar way," he said. "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. So these are the things which he told me and whatever he learned from me, he can tell," he added. 

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