India’s No. 3 batsman Cheteshwar Pujara, who scored 43 on the first day of the first Test at the Adelaide Oval here on Thursday, said it is difficult to guess how the wicket will behave with the pink ball although based on past experience he thinks the surface will help the fast bowlers for 3-4 days.
India are playing only their second Test with the pink ball, and the first overseas after making their pink-ball debut at Eden Gardens last year. They ended the first day at 233 for six with captain Virat Kohli scoring 74.
“It is very difficult to say this but there will be something for fast bowlers throughout this match. I feel that when we played our Test in 2019 there was enough in it for fast bowlers for 3-4 days. I feel it is quite similar here. But with pink ball it is difficult to judge anything at this stage.
Once we get into day two we will have better idea of how pitch is behaving. If there are any changes we will get to know tomorrow,” said Pujara after showing dour grit that saw him scoring his 43 off 160 balls at a strike rate of just over 26.
India approached the first two sessions of the pink-ball Test cautiously, scoring 107 for three wickets in 55 overs in those sessions. It was a bit lower than in 2018 when they scored 143 for six by the end of the second session.
In that Test, India lost three wickets inside the first 11 overs for just 19 and then were reduced to 86 for five before Pujara carried them to 250 for nine at the end of first day’s play. On Thursday, India ended the first day at 233 for six.
“If the wicket is good and there is nothing in the wicket for bowlers then you can play aggressively. But when there is this kind of wicket, where many times the bowlers get help, then you need patience and can’t play too many shots. The team needs a good start.
The margin of error for bowlers is high, they have leverage to experiment with the opposition. If you have a total of less than 200, the team struggles overseas. Team target is to get over 250-300 runs. So for that, start of the two sessions or one session is very important in Test format. You have to bat with patience because the bowlers are fresh, the wicket is fresh and you can’t play too many shots,” he added.