Dhoni should consider Pujara in ODIs

Zee Media Bureau/Chaitan Papnai

New Delhi: Cheteshwar Pujara, who has been seen as the successor of ‘the wall’ Rahul Dravid, has performed up to the expectations of many, to date. Even while playing in the most difficult conditions of South Africa and facing the fearsome bowling attack of Steyn & Co., he showed that he not only has the temperament to play in the longest format of the game but the technique as well to score runs.

His perfect balance, shot selection, positive frame of mind, and cool head are a few traits of his batting. Recently, the 25-year-old has expressed his desire to play for India in the ODIs as well. "I do like to play the one-day format. Especially with the 2015 World Cup coming up, I hope I get a chance to play in that team. As a cricketer, everybody dreams to play the World Cup for Team India," Pujara told a leading sports channel.

If we look at the current ODI squad selected for the upcoming New Zealand Tour, India have players like Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Ravinder Jadeja and MS Dhoni himself, who made a strong batting line up. Apart from that Ajinkya Rahane, Ambati Rayudu and now Stuart Binny are also waiting in the wings. After having so many options one can easily say that in ODIs, Pujara doesn’t have any chance, at least for now.

However, another fact is that while facing quality fast bowlers, these above mentioned batsmen did face difficulties, more often than not. They struggled against Mitchell Johnson while playing in India; they have an awful time in rainbow nation against Steyn & Co. So, against the quality fast bowlers, many Indian batsmen failed miserably.

The 2015 World Cup is scheduled to take place in Australia and New Zealand where bowlers will get fare assistance from the wickets. And the new rule of playing with two new balls would assist the fast bowlers even more. Considering these two factors in mind, Dhoni should add Pujara into his scheme of things for the World Cup 2015, who could give the team stability in the middle order by playing a sheet anchor role.