With Virat Kohli returning home, the stand-in captain Ajinkya Rahane has not only the challenge to lead the team but also motivate them to move on from crippling defeat against Australia in the pink-ball Test in Adelaide. Murali Kartik, the renowned commentator, has reckoned that Rahane needs to take a good combination in the coming Test match to bounce back stronger to forget the loss of the opening match.
Cricketer-turned-commentator Murali Kartik recalled that Ajinkya Rahane approaches the game more calmly than Kohli. He had faced Rahane during Ranji Trophy, the first-class domestic tournament of India, where he noticed that Test vice-captain maintained a quiet nature in the field unlike Kohli, who always remain animated.
“He has a very quiet nature, so that will be reflected in his captaincy as well. There will not be any overt celebrations and I feel he reads the game well. When we have played Ranji Trophy against him, he is an organised person, that is what you can expect from him,” Kartik said on Sony Sports Network.
Ajinkya Rahane not only have to save the match but win the match: Murali Kartik
Apart from Kohli’s return, India’s top-order is also the cause of concern. The young opener Prithvi Shaw struggled with the bat across both the innings, being out for duck and four runs respectively.
Murali Kartik observes that Shaw is low in confidence and mentions that Ajinkya Rhane needs to infuse that in the youngsters. He awaits for what match-winning combination will Indian team management will enter to take the game forward.
“The interesting thing will be that we have lost the match, Prithvi Shaw has not looked confident in both innings and on top of that Virat Kohli is not there, so what changes they will make to the team,” he added.
“These are the kind of things Ajinkya Rahane will have to think about because confidence has to be infused now. You need to play the players who do not have the baggage, who can help you in making a comeback,” Kartik said.
Kartik pointed out the challenges Rahane would face while captaining the Indian team in Australia. . He said that Rahane and the team management should come up with a solid plan so as to make a comeback in the series where the tourists are lagging 0-1.
“Australia is a tough place and when you are down, you need to know what sort of players you want and go with them. Their bowlers are on top, they know they can dismiss us, so you need to think about what you can do because you not only have to save the match but win the match if you have to do anything this time.
“So, that will be more important for Ajinkya Rahane and the entire team management,” opined Kartik.
After losing the first match, India will take on Australia in the second Test match scheduled to begin on December 26 in Brisbane.