Kotla didn't have the bare minimum help for spinners: Cheteshwar Pujara


During the Delhi Test, there were several instances of dropped catches by the Indian fielders.

Also, the catches come about waist high in South Africa, as compared to ankle high in the subcontinent.

"2017 has been a fantastic year for me", he said. Cheteshwar Pujara seems to be doing okay at first slip, and he was the man left defending his neighbours after the end of the Delhi Test.

"To be honest, we haven't fielded well [in the slips] and I would accept that". So we had to replace Vijay with someone. The ultimate goal of any team is to win a Test match and when we play for the Indian team, its always about scoring runs and when it comes to test cricket we take it very seriously and we always try to win as many matches as we possibly can.

"Overall we have really bowled well in this Test match especially looking at the wicket".

"If you look at the number of wickets [Ashwin and Jadeja] have taken, it is remarkable", said Pujara, in defence of his teammates.

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The first verbal volleys have been fired ahead of the Cape Town Test from an unlikely corner: the softspoken Cheteshwar Pujara, who on Wednesday chose to highlight the fact that the South African batting line-up had lost some of its zing. We have enough experience being in South Africa, that will help us. He knows, he is a hard worker, in his batting, in his fielding, in his fitness ... We know catching is very important. All players standing in the slips are taking 50 to 100 catches. Eventually results will come.

"We are having a chat about it, and we will assign a few players throughout the away series".

Sri Lanka, who finished on 299-5, could not chase down the 410-run victory target but played out of their skin to salvage some pride after being outplayed in the series. "We will discuss when we reach SA but we are already talking about that", he added. "But our fast bowlers and spinners bowled really well", Pujara said. "At the same time, our fast bowling has improved", an upbeat Pujara said. "We fully support him to make a comeback".

"When we're talking about defining a fielding position, Ajinkya [Rahane] has been fielding at gully for quite a long time". He is set there so we can't keep on changing fielders. "When he's at gully, he knows the angles, he has the idea of where to stay when he starts fielding at gully", Pujara said.

It was only poetic justice that Dhananjaya got a century - his third of the career - on a day when the whole of India was waiting to celebrate India sealing the series 2-0. "Any batsman will go through a phase where he might not score too many runs, and Ajinkya is going through the same thing".

In less than a month's time, India's much-improved four-pronged pace attack will get to test their skills on favourable climes and conditions of South Africa.