Cheteshwar Pujara very important for us in Tests, he will play at No. 3: Anil Kumble

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New Delhi, Sep 11: Team India's head coach Anil Kumble has admitted that middle-order batsman Cheteshwar Pujara is a very important batsman for the side at No.3.

India's Test squad to be announced on Sep 12; Ind-NZ series schedule

In an interview to ESPNcricinfo the former India captain felt that it's 'not good' that a sword is always hanging over the Saurashtra batsman's head.

"With modern cricket, everybody looks at the strike rate rather than what that particular player brings to that table," Kumble told ESPNcricinfo.

"Pujara is a very important cog in our wheel and when he plays at No. 3, he is a very important player. Yes, there are times when he misses out and Rohit comes in. That's when we probably feel we need someone lower down to accelerate. That's why in one of the Tests in West Indies, he missed out," said the most successful Indian bowler.

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He was dropped for the final Test against the West Indies, along with successful opener in past Test rubbers -- Murali Vijay -- by the tour management. Pujara grafted his way to 62 runs from two innings in the first two Tests in West Indies, following which he was dropped in the third Test and Rohit Sharma was given a chance. But Rothit didn't impress with the bat either for he made 9 and 41 in that match.

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"Pujara, yes, the sword is always hanging on his head, which is not good. I certainly believe he is a very important player for us and he will play at No. 3, and for us to be successful, he is important to us in the short term and long term as well," Kumble admitted.

Ever since India's return from West Indies, Pujara has answered the selectors' queries with back-to-back hundreds in the Duleep Trophy and hence he is likely to be included in the squad on Monday (Sep 12).

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