‘We are not going out, we are here to play cricket and we respect our players’ – Ajinkya Rahane to umpires after Mohammed Siraj faced racial abuse in Sydney
Rahane excelled both as a leader and the batsman as he hammered a scintillating knock of 112 runs in the second Test at Melbourne Cricket Ground that helped India in winning the game and gaining the confidence back.
Updated - Jan 26, 2021 11:37 am
A huge controversy had erupted in the third Test of the four-match Border Gavaskar Trophy between India and Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) when India’s pace sensation Mohammed Siraj had complained of being racially abused by the local crowd. Not only, Siraj but Jasprit Bumrah also had to face the wrath of the Australian fans at SCG.
This entire episode hadn’t gone well with the Indian team as they immediately reported the matter to the match officials who gave captain Ajinkya Rahane an option to leave the field in the middle of the game to make a strong statement against such abuse.
However, Rahane decided to continue playing when the spectators who were found passing racist slang were asked to leave the stadium. Speaking about the whole issue, Ajinkya told Sports Today, “What happened in Sydney was really sad. With Siraj and a couple of others. We had to take a stand. Yes, I said that we are not going out of the field, we are here to play cricket.
“At the same time, we respect our players so if you can actually take those guys out who used bad language. We are here and we can start the game. We didn’t want to lose that momentum. At the same time, we respect our players and I am always there for my players.”
India was going through a rough phase after the first Test at Adelaide Oval as they were bundled out for a paltry total of 36 runs in the third innings, their lowest ever Test total. In addition, they were without the services of their skipper Virat Kohli who had returned back home for the birth of his first child.
Melbourne Test hundred was really special, says Ajinkya Rahane
In such tough circumstances, Ajinkya Rahane excelled both as a leader and the batsman as he hammered a scintillating knock of 112 runs in the second Test at Melbourne Cricket Ground. It eventually helped India in winning the game and gaining confidence back.
Detailing his opinion on his Boxing Day hundred, Rahane reckoned that he watches clips of Sachin’s innings to prepare for MCG. He further revealed that at first, he didn’t understand the importance of his hundred but later when he reflected on his innings, he felt that it was crucial and special as the team was going through a tough phase.
“I saw Sachin’s innings in which he got a hundred at the MCG when he was the captain. I got 116 in that game, I was watching his innings. I watched it 10 times on the previous night and the morning of the game around 6-7 times. He and Dravid are my role models,” the 32-year-old said.
“But yes, the Melbourne Test hundred was really special. I said in Melbourne that my Lord’s hundred was special but many people told me that I think Melbourne hundred was better than my Lord’s hundred. I did not know how to react to that. But now I realised, given the circumstances after the Adelaide Test match, Melbourne Test was really crucial for the series, and yes I thought Melbourne innings was really special,” Rahane added.