Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane faced heavy criticism for their failures in the second innings of the World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand. With India in desperate need of their senior pros to stand up and take them to a position of safety on Day 6 at Rose Bowl, the duo failed to provide the goods, succumbing to a pair of frustrating dismissals.
Usually a picture of restraint and composure at the crease, Pujara got out to New Zealand’s in-form quick Kyle Jamieson when he uncharacteristically flirted at a ball outside off-stump and edged the ball through to slips.
Pujara had batted with good discipline and patience up until that moment, facing 79 deliveries for his 15. On the 80th, however, a misjudgment following a prolonged setup by Jamieson did the damage. Pujara, renowned for his concentration and patience, couldn’t help but play at the wrong angle after a ball delivered from wide of the crease held its line just enough.
Going through a phase where he hasn’t been as prolific with the bat for a while, Pujara’s dismissal and the timing of it – just after Virat Kohli had also gone out to Jamieson in the similar way – attracted criticism in the social media, with many over Twitter going to the extent of questioning his longstanding method and place in the team.
— मेहरान 🇮🇳 (@mehranzaidi) June 23, 2021
It’s high time Cheteshwar Pujara must realise that playing 200 balls and scoring 35 runs is
Not a great help, always to your team.
— Shahab Jafri (@ShahabJafri55) June 23, 2021
— Veerakumaran (@Veeru_Journo) June 23, 2021
Fans unleash anger as Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane disappoint in WTC final
Rahane, a player that faces a lot of question marks for his consistency, once again left much to be desired for India’s worried cricket fans as he got out painfully edging the ball down the leg side off Trent Boult.
As has been the case so often with Rahane, he looked brilliant at the crease for his knock of 15 off 40 balls until the wicket ball arrived. Much to the fans’ anguish, Rahane couldn’t clip the ball away off his pads and nicked it to wicketkeeper BJ Watling.
It was another innings that promised so much more from Rahane, as he showed great clarity and positivity at the crease whilst he was there. On Day 2 as well, Rahane had looked in imperious touch for his 49 before completely losing his concentration and handing an easy catch straight to the short leg fielder.
As with Pujara, Rahane’s dismissal didn’t go down with the Twitter world, which unleashed its anger on the experienced Indian No.5 and called for his ouster from the Indian team.
987654322nd occasion today.. https://t.co/UQtUKADEVl
— Gurkirat Singh Gill (@gurkiratsgill) June 23, 2021
There will come a time we will move ahead of Ajinkya Rahane
— BS (@Ahmadbilal111) June 23, 2021
— Arjun (@LifeIsAnElation) June 23, 2021