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Rahane had a mixed run in 2018 which also saw him struggling to make things county during his county stint for Hamsphire in 2019.
Kohli had backed Rahane, who has done a decent job for India in the top-flight cricket. Also, the skipper is hopeful that Rahane will deliver under the compelling circumstances of the game.
Rahane is a solid player: Virat Kohli
Ahead of the Caribbean tour, Kohli stated that Rahane is a ‘solid player’ who subsequently is known for his batting.
“Jinks [Rahane] has been a solid player for us through and through and that’s always been our communication,” Kohli said in a press conference.
India is set to face the Windies in the three-match T20Is, as many ODIs and two Tests. The series will begin on August 3 at Lauderhill in Florida. Also, their World Test Championship campaign will get underway on August Antigua.
In the series against South Africa, Rahane missed out first two Tests before returning to England and Australia series.
The right-handed top-order batsman Rahane had faced Windies at home. Rahane had struggled to convert his 50s into a big score.
Since the past 24 months, Rahane had managed just five 50-plus scores. He maintained that he is focusing on his game to make some amends at the earliest.
Kohli maintained Team India could rely on Rahane alongside Test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara.
“He is one of the pillars of our batting order that we can bank on. Him and [Cheteshwar] Pujara, as I’ve said, have been our most solid Test players. I am sure along with Puji playing so well, myself at No. 4, Jinks will also come into the groove and once he starts scoring, he can spring in scores on a consistent basis,” Kohli remarked.
Kohli heaps praise on Ajinkya Rahane:
The 30-year-old Kohli had lauded Rahane for his composure and character. He added Rahane had been at the forefront to play a pivotal role for India, particularly in the multi-day format.
Kohli reiterated that they shouldn’t ‘jump the gun’ as Rahane had given a lot to look at.
“He is one of the most sorted guys. Really, really composed, reads the game well also, priceless fielder, we have all seen the impact he can make in Test cricket with his slip catching and everything. I think under pressure he has performed really well. The guy averages 43 (40.55) in Test cricket, it’s not like he is in the early 30s. I don’t think we should jump the gun on someone like Jinks because he has done the job for you under pressure,” Kohli added.
Meanwhile, Kohli is optimistic about Rahane. He added that the team is not anxious about his placement in the line-up. He said it’s about backing him to make things count for the team.
“We are not at all worried about where he’s placed. It’s about giving him confidence and he really wants to turn it around. That’s the most important thing and that’s all that matters,” Kohli concluded.
The 31-year-old batsman Rahane had featured in the last Test against Australia at Sydney in January 2019.