ANI Photo | With Kohli missing England series, Pujara could have brought consistency to India batting line-up: Stuart Broad

Former England seamer Stuart Broad has suggested that India batter Cheteshwar Pujara should have been included in the Indian Test team for the ongoing five-match series against England in the absence of former skipper Virat Kohli as the batting line-up is relatively inexperienced.
Virat is missing the five-match series due to personal reasons.
“With the experience & world-class talent of Kohli missing, would there have been temptation to bring back Pujara into this India batting lineup? Or is his international career over? Feels like he could have brought some consistency and an anchor,” Broad posted on X.
Pujara was the backbone of Indian middle-order batting from the early 2010s to the early 2020s. Pujara represented India in 103 Tests, scoring 7,195 runs at an average of 43.60, with 19 centuries and 35 fifties in 176 innings. His best score is 206*. Pujara has also played five ODIs for India.
However, since India’s historic win over Australia at The Gabba in Brisbane in January 2021, in which he played a crucial role, Pujara’s statistics have taken a huge nosedive. Since that iconic victory, which also helped India gain an inspirational series win in Australia, Pujara has represented India in 22 Tests further, scoring just 1,084 runs at an underwhelming average of 29.29, with just a century and seven fifties to show in 40 innings. This caused Pujara’s omission from the team.
Pujara’s last assignment for India was the ICC World Test Championship final in the UK, which India lost. The veteran batter has not featured in Test cricket since then. He was not included for the series against West Indies and South Africa away from home and then the home series against England as well.
Pujara has been scoring a lot of runs in Ranji though, scoring 783 runs at an average of 71.18, with three tons and two fifties in 12 innings.
Coming to the match, England scored 353 runs in their first innings after electing to bat. India had reduced England to 112/5, but Joe Root (122* in 274 balls, with 10 fours) roared back to form with 31st Test century. Also, handy contributions came through from wicketkeeper-batter Ben Foakes (47 in 126 balls, with four boundaries and a six) and Ollie Robinson (58 in 96 balls, with nine fours and a six), with both stitching century stands with Root.
Ravindra Jadeja (4/67) was the pick of the bowlers for India while it was debutant Akash Deep (3/83) who stole the show with his opening spell. Mohammed Siraj (2/78) was also good with the ball.
In the second innings, India ended the day two at 219/7, with Dhruv Jurel (30*) and Kuldeep Yadav (17*). Yashasvi Jaiswal continued his red-hot form with a knock of 73 in 117 balls, with eight fours and a six. Shubman Gill also scored 38 in 65 balls, with six fours. Spinners Shoaib Bashir (4/84) and Tom Hartley (2/47) dominated Team India and the Three Lions lead by 134 runs. (ANI)

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