Cheteshwar Pujara Aakash Chopra
Cheteshwar Pujara exclusion from the playing XI would leave me surprised, says Aakash Chopra. Image Courtesy: Getty

Former India cricketer Aakash Chopra admitted he would heartbroken if Test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara fails to get a place in the first XI for the first Test against England, starting August 1st.

Meanwhile, Cheteshwar Pujara has suddenly found himself in the middle of things with his Test place in jeopardy. Pujara had a lukewarm outing playing County Cricket in England, managing to score 172 runs in 12 innings. Moreover, the right-hander also struggled to put some runs under his belt in the warm-up game against Essex.

As a result, with the first Test looming ahead, Cheteshwar Pujara is fighting for his place. It is likely that KL Rahul will replace him after showing impeccable form off late.

However, Aakash Chopra said he would be “heartbroken” if Pujara fails to make the cut.

There’s no way you can drop Pujara. Rahul is doing well, but Pujara has to be in the playing XI. I will be heartbroken if Pujara gets dropped,” Chopra told Sportstar.

Aakash Chopra Cheteshwar Pujara
Aakash Chopra says the exclusion of Cheteshwar Pujara would leave him surprised.

Yes, Cheteshwar Pujara didn’t score (too many) runs in the county circuit and also in the warm-up game, but he has been the batsman of pedigree in the last 4-5 years and he wasn’t that bad to be fair. To accommodate Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan has to go,” he added.

India started the tour with a bang, winning the T20I series. However, the wheels came off during the ODI series, as England beat the Men in Blue 2-1.

Aakash Chopra feels the tournament will be fought on even terms, but it will not be easy for India.

We are in a precarious position, but with the conditions being dry in England, spin will play a bigger role. That allows us to compete on equal terms. But it won’t be easy,” he concluded.

The five-match Test series will begin on August 1st.

Ankush Das

I am an accountant by qualification, my parents thought their obedient son would study further to become a CA, but I had other things in mind. An ardent Cricket fan is following his passion and making...