The tourists were warned, of course, there would be days like these at some point on their eight-week Test trip. On the middle one of three in their second match at the Dr DY Patil Sports Stadium, they found out at first hand for themselves.
An emerging force in India's Test team but one with whom England would not previously have been familiar, Pujara (87) batted for almost four-and-a-half hours as Mumbai A posted 232 for four in reply to England's 345 for nine declared.
He and his less heralded third-wicket partner Hiken Shah (84no) each needed 140 balls to reach 50, Pujara slightly more expansive in hitting seven boundaries to the left-hander's four.
Stand-in captain Stuart Broad increasingly favoured spin over seam, deploying himself in notably short spells and James Anderson and Graham Onions sparingly too.
But nothing he tried could shift the third-wicket pair, until Monty Panesar turned one sharply from a perfect length to have Pujara caught at slip.
England managed a solitary success in each of the first two sessions - courtesy of Onions and Joe Root - and then two in the third, Anderson having Suryakumar Yadav caught-behind with the second new ball just before stumps.
After the tourists had stuttered from an overnight 338 for six to their declaration on 345 in the morning, Anderson found early swing but no wickets.
Broad moved fluidly enough to scotch suggestions in some quarters he may be short of match fitness, but it was first-change Onions who got the first breakthrough. Bahvin Thakkar caught behind to a length ball which the opener made it clear he did not think he had hit.
Pujara therefore joined Shikhar Dawan, either side of lunch, until the latter was caught at slip when Root got one to grip and bounce with his occasional off-spin.
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- James Anderson
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