Cheteshwar Pujara's selection in the ODI squad didn't come as a surprise to Arvind Pujara. Like many others, Pujara Sr too wanted his son in coloured clothing, especially after India's dismal show in the recent series in New Zealand.
The national selectors finally picked the Test specialist from Saurashtra for the Asia Cup in Bangladesh from February 25, and dropped non-performers Suresh Raina and Ishant Sharma from the side that lost 0-4 in New Zealand.
India's batting has been facing some serious problems and Pujara's inclusion will bring a certain kind calming influence to it. With Pujara in, the top order can play their natural game without worrying about the middle overs while Virat Kohli, too, would be relieved that the team might not be depended wholly on him.
Pujara, who has an average of 55 in List A, has a game that is required as per the current rules, and especially in the middle-overs when one has to rotate the strike. His near perfect technique to play in the swinging and bouncy conditions of the Australia and New Zealand where the 2015 World Cup is to take place, might have prompted the selectors to give a chance to the 26-year-old.
Pujara's father and childhood coach Arvind said an ODI berth means a lot to his son. "It is every cricketer's dream to play for India in all the formats. His dream is to play the World Cup. He has got the opportunity and now he should use it to the fullest," said the senior Pujara.
Arvind feels that Cheteshwar is apt to bat in the middle overs with the new rules in vogue. "He will bat with responsibility with the new ODI rules that has two new balls and the middle overs. Cheteshwar is a technically sound batsman, his presence in the team is important and even the selectors might have felt the same. He can bring stability in the team if a wicket falls early. He can play it on and help the team build a reasonable score. Like how Rahul Dravid would bring stability, Cheteshwar's role will be of a similar kind," he added.
So can he deliver when it would matter? "If you look at his records in both formats, you will come to know. He has done well in one-dayers apart from the longer version. He is a good one-day material, if you ask me," said Pujara.
Pujara had earlier made it to the ODI squad for the Zimbabwe tour last year. However, he returned with disappointing scores of 13 and 0 in the two matches that he played.
Whether Pujara will be able to solve India's batting problems before the World Cup, only time will tell.