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Ajinkya Rahane said that it will be a tough ask for both the nation as they will be under pressure and both need to perform to the best of their abilities

 

In a total glance he has played 30 test matches and has scored impressive 2615 runs with an average of 48.11 at that particular period of time which included 8 tons to his name

 

He, however, made a welcome return with a well-measured innings of 82 in the one-off Test against Bangladesh in Hyderabad. "That innings [against Bangladesh] was really important for me. I was really excited about that Test match, coming back after two months," Rahane said before the first Test against Australia in Pune on Monday (February 20). "So I was looking forward to that Test match and importantly, I got 82. Felt really good in the middle. But it is important to start fresh here."

 

"I would like to thank my team management and my captain, they backed me in the Bangladesh game. I wanted to back myself in the middle and I did that. I am really confident at the moment, [about] playing against Australia. As I mentioned, for all of us, for me, it is important to take one game at a time. Momentum will be the key. If you play well in the first game, we have to carry that momentum forward. We will look to play positive cricket, attacking cricket not only against the spinners but all the bowlers," he said.

With the Australians just having finished their tour game in Mumbai against India A which ended in a draw, Rahane said that the visitors had a good side and to overcome them, India will have to play to their potential and back themselves. "Australia, we all know is a very good team. So it is important to play to our potential and back ourselves in the middle. As a team, we are playing really well. It is important to take one game at a time and continue from the first game."

"We don't know if they will sledge or not. We have some plans against each of them, I can't discuss that here, skill-wise or sledging-wise, there is definitely a plan. We know that Australian players play mind games. Our aim would be to dominate them in every aspect," he said, adding that India's focus was on playing to their potential and not contemplating what Australia's combinations or strategies will be. "They are coming to India and will be expecting a turning track. So, yes, three fast bowlers and five spinners are their combinations, but for us, it will be important to play to our potential and not focus on their bowling attack, strategies. It is important for each team member to back our own game," he said.

 

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