‘If you’re trying to dig something out, you won’t get anything’ – Virat Kohli to journalist on Ajinkya Rahane’s form
Rahane has managed just 779 runs at 29.96 in 18 matches with a single hundred and 6 fifty-plus scores under Kohli's leadership in India.
Updated - Feb 9, 2021 6:01 pm
India succumbed to a massive defeat by 227 runs against England in the highly-anticipated first Test of the four-match series at MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. This once again resulted in people questioning the exclusion of the Chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav for the playing XI. India had entered the first match with three spinners namely Ravi Ashwin, Shahbaz Nadeem, and Washington Sundar.
While Ashwin was at his fluent best throughout the game as he picked a whopping six wickets in the third innings, Nadeem and Sundar disappointed as the former could pick only four wickets across two innings while Sundar went wicketless. However, Sundar managed to justify his place in the team by hammering a stunning 85 not out in the second innings.
Speaking in the post-match presentation, Indian skipper Virat Kohli clarified that they don’t have any regrets about leaving Kuldeep Yadav and will be looking forward to a new combination for the next Test which will suit the requirements of the team.
“Not really, not at all. When you play 2 off-spinners, Kuldeep more or less becomes a similar bowling option with him taking the ball away. You need variety in the bowling attack. So we were quite clear on the combination we wanted to play.
“So there are no regrets in that decision. Moving forward, we will think of combinations that will give us variety in the bowling attack. Not one dimensional, so these things are very important going forward,” Virat Kohli said.
Ajinkya Rahane is an impact player: Virat Kohli
India’s vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane was also put under major scrutiny by the fans for his poor performance with the willow. Though Rahane had played a match-defining knock against Australia at MCG, he has failed to perform consistently and registered scores of 1 and 0 respectively in the first Test against England.
Rahane has managed just 779 runs at 29.96 in 18 matches with a single hundred and 6 fifty-plus scores under Kohli’s leadership in India. Opining on the same, Kohli reckoned that Rahane is a vital part of India’s Test team and will bounce back stronger in the future.
“Look, if you’re trying to dig something out, you’re not going to get anything because there is nothing,” the Indian skipper said on being asked about Ajinkya Rahane’s poor scores in the Chepauk Test. “Ajinkya and I’ve said this many a time in the past as well, that along with Pujara, he is our most important Test batsman and he’s going to continue to be. We believe in his abilities; we have believed in his abilities for a long time. He’s an impact player. If you talk about the MCG Test, he stood up and scored a hundred there when the team wanted it most,” Kohli told the press on Tuesday.