In the middle of the first day of the first Test match, team India was under extreme pressure after losing two early wickets in KL Rahul and Shubman Gill. Additionally, the previous captain Virat Kohli too had a cheap wicket loss. Since they were left with sole responsibility, Cheteshwar Pujara and Rishabh Pant once again stepped up to save the Indian team from an embarrassing start.
The 34-year-old created a crucial partnership with Shreyas Iyer to put India in a strong position on the first day of the first Test when the pitch was totally in favor of the spinners. The Rajkot-born player had 90 runs off 203 deliveries before Taijul Islam finally outlasted him. Iyer, though, concluded the day on 82* and will be a key player for KL Rahul and company in the remainder of the innings on day two.
Soon after the day’s play came to a finish, India’s number three batsman acknowledged how difficult it has been for the batters to maintain their momentum throughout the Test. Pujara expressed satisfaction with his performance despite missing out on a well-deserving century and added that there will undoubtedly be a result in this field.
“The way I was batting and looking at the pitch – it’s not an easy pitch to bat on. So, I’m really happy with the way I batted today. Sometimes we just pay attention to the three-figure mark but the most important thing is that when you play this sport you try and put your team in a position where you have a chance of winning the game. So, the pitch looks like that there will be a result and we needed some runs on the board. So, I think my partnership with Shreyas (Iyer) was very important,” said Pujara in the press conference after day one.
Rishabh Pant was the first Indian player to use his aggressive style of play to counter the Bangladeshi bowling after taking three fast wickets early on. The southpaw got off to a strong start but was unable to capitalize when Mehidy Hasan dismissed the keeper-batter on run-out at 46. Nevertheless, the 25-year-old relieved Pujara of some of his pressure, which ultimately aided the Indian squad in recovering from the early carnage.
“Rishabh always keeps his strategy very simple. He likes to play attacking cricket and that’s good for us. He can put the bowlers under pressure and that always helps us to build a partnership. He likes to play his shots and courtesy of which, I too get a few loose balls from time to time. I think we always enjoy that partnership because he knows that I am there at the other end. He plays his natural game which is important for the team as well,” the cricketer added.