Cheteshwar Pujara, on Thursday, went past Vijay Merchant’s all-time record for most 200-plus scores in first-class cricket by an Indian. In Saurashtra’s fourth round tie against Jharkhand at Rajkot, the 29-year-old crafted a patient 204 from 355 balls as his side strolled past the 500-run mark.
Merchant, one of India’s earliest stars, had stockpiled 11 scores of more than 200. Some of the other former greats, Vijay Hazare, Rahul Dravid and Sunil Gavaskar, are also not far behind, having brought up 10 double-hundreds.
In what is a testament to Pujara’s run-scoring skills, he also has three triple-hundreds to his credit, a record he shares with India and Saurashtra teammate Ravindra Jadeja, who is also a part of the playing XI.
Saurashtra flayed the Jharkhand attack, which included pacer Varun Aaron and the consistent Shahbaz Nadeem. The onus was on Pujara to take his side to safety after the visitors made early inroads. The classy batsman was the ninth man to be dismissed after being trapped leg-before by Nadeem.