Cheteshwar Pujara has been in sensational form of late. Three centuries in his last three first-class matches has ensured that Pujara travels to South Africa with confidence to improve on a staggering record in Test cricket. Two of these centuries, including a double-century vs Tamil Nadu, have come for Saurashtra in the Ranji Trophy, while another ton came against West Indies in Sachin Tendulkar's 200th and final match in Mumbai.
Ahead of any away tour, every batsmen in world cricket needs runs under his belt, particularly if it's against the world's best Test side. Pujara couldn't agree more. "These back-to-back hundreds have given me a lot of confidence. Now, it will be a matter of adapting to the conditions in South Africa," he said in an interview to the Indian Express.
In 15 Test matches, Pujara has played just two abroad, his 2nd and 3rd in international cricket - incidentally against the South Africans in 2010-11. Facing Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel proved a challenge even for a talented player like Pujara. He recorded scores of 19, 10 and 2 in the three innings he played. Against Tsotobe and Morkel, he failed against the short-delivery, something Pujara admits he has to work on even today, three years after the previous tour. (Related: Dhoni practices with red Kookaburra balls)