Former India player turned commentator Aakash Chopra has shared his views on the Indian batting attack which has failed miserably in the inaugural World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand. He stated that aggressive batsmanship cannot always be considered as the right intent. He again shared that players like Cheteshwar Pujara and Rishabh Pant are totally different and they bring their own qualities to the batting attack.
However, his comments came after India captain Virat Kohli was questioned the intent of some of the players during the post-match press conference and he said that they need players with the right mindset of scoring. Meanwhile, in a video shared on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra was responded to a fan who asked about the future of Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane, following their poor show and Virat Kohli’s recent statement.
Aakash Chopra said: “I have got no doubt in my mind that the England series will go good for Rahane and Pujara but everyone has their own style of playing. We must respect that what you get from Pujara, you will not get from Pant and what you get from Rahane, you will not get from Kohli.”
He continued: “Let’s wait and watch. I don’t think he is singling out people, that Pujara or Rahane played slowly. Maybe he is just talking about a different frame of mind which might have been there in the dressing room, which may not have been that positive. I don’t think he was talking about Pujara and Rahane.”
However, Pujara scored 23 runs in both innings of the WTC final, facing 134 deliveries to do so as well. Rahane, on the other hand, top-scored in their first innings with 49 runs. But he did not look too comfortable at the crease. And, Aakash Chopra also opened up on Rishabh Pant’s ultra-aggressive approach and Rohit Sharma’s batting.
He explained: “What is intent? Colin de Grandhomme also shows intent, he comes and starts slogging, is that the right intent? Pant also showed the intent in the second innings but was that the right intent? Rohit Sharma was playing defensively but I thought it was positive intent. Rishabh Pant was playing with the aggressive intent but it was probably not the right intent from the Indian team’s perspective.”
Aakash Chopra concluded by saying that the fighting displayed by Pujara, Ravichandran Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy against Australia was something that can be called the right intent: “Intent is something which is grossly overrated at times. When Cheteshwar Pujara stood in Sydney, taking blows all over the body, Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari did that. If you go to Gabba, Pujara was getting hit by the ball repeatedly. That is also the right intent.”