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Rediff.com  » Cricket » After IPL snub Pujara returns to English county cricket

After IPL snub Pujara returns to English county cricket

January 30, 2018 15:43 IST

'Each time I've played county cricket it has improved me as a player.'

Cheteshwar PujaraGareth Copley/Getty ImagesIndia Test batsman Cheteshwar Pujara has signed for a second stint with English county Yorkshire to prepare for his national side's tour of the country later this year.

The 29-year-old, who played for Yorkshire in 2015, will share overseas duties with New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson, giving the county three of the world's top six Test batsmen -- England captain Joe Root being the other -- on their staff.

"It's an honour for me to play for the same county as (former India batsmen) Yuvraj Singh and Sachin Tendulkar, and each time I've played county cricket it has improved me as a player," Pujara said in a club statement.Gareth Copley/Getty Images"That's the plan again in 2018. I just want to score as many runs as possible for Yorkshire and soak up as much as I can from the whole experience."

Known for his defensive technique, Pujara went unsold in the recent auction for this year's Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 competition but bats at the important number three position in the test side.

India will play five Tests in England, starting at Edgbaston on August 1.

Despite a deal for the Rajkot-born right-hander being struck several weeks ago, the club's announcement was delayed until after the Indian Premier League auction.

During his stint, India will play a one-off Test against Afghanistan in Bengaluru, from June 14-18, and Pujara is set to depart for his home country after the Royal London 50-overs clash at Lancashire.

Yorkshire is hoping Pujara will return in time for an away trip to Hampshire, in the Specsavers County Championship, on June 20. The club also said that Pujara may stay on after India's five-match Test tour of England between August 1 and September 11.

"There is also potential for Pujara to stay on after the India's summer Test tour to play the final home fixture against Hampshire (September 18) followed by the trip to New Road to face Worcestershire (September 24)," the club said in its website.

Pujara, who delivered a record-breaking 12th double century of his 12-year career towards the end of 2017, averages 56.68 in first-class cricket. His County Championship record stands at 816 runs with three fifties and as many hundreds. One of each came in Yorkshire colours in the early stages of the Club’s second successive Championship winning year.

(With inputs from PTI)

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