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January 2022
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Kohli is getting better, will be given soon: Pujara
 
Johannesburg, India top-order batter Cheteshwar Pujara on Wednesday said that Virat Kohli, who suffered an upper back spasm, is getting better.

"Can't tell officially. He's (Kohli) is getting better. An update by BCCI will be given soon," said Pujara in a virtual press conference.

KL Rahul is leading India in the second Test match against South Africa after regular captain Kohli was ruled out of the match just before the toss.

India set a target of 240 for South Africa but are now in a tight spot as the hosts reached 118/2 at stumps on Day 3. South Africa need another 122 runs to win and level the series, which is part of the ICC World Test Championship (WTC).

Pujara, however, feels the match is still balanced and India have a chance as the pitch will deteriorate on fourth day.

"It's important to always get runs especially on challenging pitches. We've runs on board and the match is balanced. Pitch will deteriorate tomorrow. So we've a chance," he said.

Pujara, who is considered India's new wall, batted unusually fast in his 86-ball 53, while Ajinkya Rahane played a knock of 58 off 78 balls. The duo stitched a century partnership after finding themselves under immense pressure.

When asked whether it was conscious decision to bat fast, Pujara said, "It was a conscious decision. Pitch has variable bounce. So it was part of my game plan. Whenever I got loose balls I made sure to convert them. I'm happy things went well. The partnership with Ajinkya was crucial."

"There's backing from the management. Yes, sometimes questions come to mind when there's a bad form. But we (Rahane and I) are confident players. Form is temporary, class is permanent. We've done well in the past. Once you're back in form, you go on," added Pujara.

In spite of the outside noise and criticism, the team management backed them for the India tour of South Africa.

"Management has always been supportive. It's just the outside noise. The supporting staff and captain are always behind players. When you follow the right process, you get runs," Pujara signed off.


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