‘Kind of lost that part of his game’ – Dale Steyn Reveals the Recent Behind Cheteshwar Pujara’s Poor Form

Former South African Test bowler Dale Steyn believes Indian batsman Cheteshwar Pujara has lost a certain weapon from his arsenal which is the reason for his poor form.

Cheteshwar Pujara and Dale Steyn
Cheteshwar Pujara and Dale Steyn

Ever since making his debut for the Indian cricket team, Cheteshwar Pujara has played the role of a reliable top order batsman in the red-ball format. However, the 33-year-old is going through a slump as of now.

He failed to deliver in both of the innings against New Zealand in the WTC final. As a result, the entire batting lineup crumbled behind him. He scored a combined 23 runs in the Ultimate Test, which is just far below his standards.

But what was the reason for this poor performance? South African bowler Dale Steyn seems to have an answer for fans.

Dale Steyn on Cheteshwar Pujara’s performance in WTC final

Cheteshwar Pujara
Cheteshwar Pujara

Up until a few years ago, the battle between Cheteshwar Pujara and Dale Steyn captured the eyes of every cricket fan. The two will go head to head against each other and produce an epic contest.

Steyn, who was a terrific Test bowler during his prime, explained what Pujara is missing right now.

“Out of my memory, I just remember Pujara playing great off his legs. Very, very good off his legs, and ball underneath the eyes. But I do remember him playing some magical cut shots and backfoot drives,” said Steyn.

The 37-year-old further continued, “That’s the thing I have seen lacking in Pujara. I’m so used to him rocking onto his backfoot and playing with his hands and good feet movement. He’s kind of lost that part of his game. And if you’re only hanging on the front foot, good bowlers will not bowl half-volleys to you. And you’ve got to turn good balls into good shots. That’s the difference between Test cricket and First-Class cricket. He’s missing out on a lot of runs there.”

Whether this is just a phase or Pujara has truly lost his flair, fans will find out in the upcoming matches. Hopefully, Pujara can bounce back from this slump and once again be the pillar for team India that he’s known for.

What are your thoughts on Cheteshwar Pujara’s performance in WTC final? Let us know your views in the comments section below.

ALSO READ: Cheteshwar Pujara: A personification of grit in adversity

Aikansh Chaudhary is part-time Cricket contributor for First Sportz. He previously worked as an NBA columnist for Essentially Sports. He also wrote over 2000 articles during his stint as a freelance writer. A die-hard Chennai Super Kings fan, Aikansh will forever uphold MS Dhoni as the best player for the Indian cricket team.