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Posted at: Mar 20, 2017, 2:31 AM; last updated: Mar 20, 2017, 2:31 AM (IST)

Good Sunday crowd for Pujara’s double century

Good Sunday crowd for Pujara’s double century
A 17,000-strong crowd turned up at the Jharkhand State Cricket Association Stadium in Ranchi on Sunday.

Sabi Hussain

Tribune News Service

Ranchi, march 19

Ranchi finally warmed up to its historic inaugural Test, and an impressive crowd turned up on the fourth day. The first three days had seen crowds of 6,000 at the most, and the 38,000-seater stadium was mostly empty.

Today, though, a 17,000-strong crowd turned up for an engrossing day’s cricket, and they were treated to fine centuries by Cheteshwar Pujara and Wriddhiman Saha. 

The crowd got deeply involved with the action in the middle — they cheered every run scored by Pujara and Saha, and booed the Australians when they sledged the batsmen.

Many fans had their faces painted in the colours of the Indian flag, and many of them were wearing the Indian jersey. They started queuing up outside the stadium in the morning, forgetting the difficulties involved in reaching the stadium, located 20km outside the city.

For 83-year-old Manu Das, Pujara’s masterclass brought back the memories of watching Sunil Gavaskar play. “I love Pujara’s traditional batting,” Das, a founding member of the Ranchi Districts Cricket Association in 1963, said. “His level-headedness and strong technique remind me of Gavaskar and Rahul Dravid.” For 22-year-old Raghubir Samyal, it was Ravindra Jadeja’s attacking 50 which lit up his day. “I liked the way Pujara and Saha batted,” Samyal, an IPL fan, said. “It was important for India to reach the safety zone. But those quick fours and sixes by Jadeja were the highlight of the day. It was an entertaining final session.”

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