Cricket

Our plan for Pujara has worked: Cummins


‘He’s going to hang around, but we want to make it as hard as possible for him to score’

Australian pacer Pat Cummins said that his side had done its homework to tie down Cheteshwar Pujara, one of the lead architects in India’s series win Down Under in 2018-19.

Cummins has played a central role in executing these plans, dismissing Pujara four times this series, including in Sydney on Saturday, as Australia took a 94-run first-innings lead.

“Today, I got a bit of assistance from the pitch that seems to jump up a little bit, but he is someone that you know you are going to have to bowl a lot at. We got our heads around [it] that this series for him to score runs, we are going to make it as hard as possible,” said Cummins.

“Whether he bats for 200 or 300 balls, we are just trying to bowl good ball after good ball, challenge both sides of his bat, and so far it has worked,” he added.

Talking about Pujara’s steadfast defence, Cummins said, “You know he’s going to hang around, but as long as you are controlling the scoreboard … bowling well with a tight field, [we are] not overly bothered. I think at one stage he had been out there for 150 or 200 balls, and I remember looking up thinking they are still 200 away, so that felt a long way away.”

Cummins said that with the pitch starting to deteriorate, Australia is in a very good position to dominate the match. “The big thing is to get the lead up over 300-odd and hopefully the wicket keeps deteriorating and makes that a really tough total to score on days four and five,” he added.

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