Indian Test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara might have finally bagged a contract in IPL; however, he feels for one of his fellow teammates, who is not part of the upcoming edition. Cheteshwar Pujara’s recent Test performances earned awards as Chennai Super Kings picked him in the auction for INR 50 lakhs. Nevertheless, the Saurashtra batsman wanted Hanuma Vihari to be part of the forthcoming season of the marquee T20 league as well.
Cheteshwar Pujara last played in the IPL back in 2014, starring for the Kings XI Punjab. Not particularly known for hard-hitting abilities or shifting gears quickly, the right-handed batsman got overlooked from the auctions. On the other hand, Hanuma Vihari, who has previously been part of the Delhi Capitals and SunRisers Hyderabad, entered the auction with a base price of INR 1 crores, could not find a buyer.
Cheteshwar Pujara underlined that he feels glad that his performances for the Indian team hadn’t gone unnoticed and the franchises clapped when Chennai secured his services. The 33-year old understood that doing something incredible for the national team is usually recognized by the people and his teammates were equally happy when the Super Kings picked him. Pujara went on to sympathize with Hanuma Vihari as well, remarking that having once been part of IPL, he should have played this time too.
“Absolutely. I’m really pleased that what I’ve done for the Indian team is noticed and I got the results for that. I was told when I was picked, all the franchises clapped in the auction room. I feel that when you are doing something for the Indian team, people love it, they know the value I bring in. Not just the franchise, almost all y India teammates were really happy for me. Last few years, I’m the only one who has been missing out on playing in the IPL for the Indian team. The only guy missing out this stage is Hanuma Vihari. I feel for him. He was previously part of IPL. I feel that he should also be part of IPL,” Pujara told ESPN Cricinfo.
When it comes to being part of the IPL, any cricketer would want to be part of it: Cheteshwar Pujara
Cheteshwar Pujara further said that he felt enormously pleased to be back in the IPL since it is a tournament an Indian player, in particular, does not want to miss. The Saurashtra batsman revealed that he plays county cricket every year; however, with COVID-19 last year, he could not do that either. Pujara claimed that IPL is one of the best T20 leagues in the world and as an Indian cricketer, he would not want to miss the competition.
“I was really pleased to be back in the IPL again. This is something which you don’t want to miss out, as an Indian player. Usually, I play county cricket, but last year because of Covid-19 I missed out on that. When you love playing this game you want to play it. And when it’s IPL you want to be part of it. It is one of the best leagues in the world. Yes, playing for the Indian team is a different thing entirely, but when it comes to being part of the IPL, any cricketer would want to be part of it. I am no exception,” he added.