Right-handed Indian batsman Ajinkya Rahane is considered one of the vital when it comes to Test cricket. But unfortunately the same cannot be said regarding ODIs and T20Is. The vice-captain of the Test team has gone down the order in shorter formats.
Rahane got a golden chance to seal his place during the last South Africa tour. He was asked to play the role of the No. 4 batsman. He started the series on a good note by scoring 79 runs off 86 balls.
However in the next four matches, he had scores of 11, 8, 8 and 34*. Thus his inconsistency proved fatal and he couldn’t cement his place. After that he had a tough IPL season with Rajasthan Royals. Rahane managed 370 runs in 15 games with a very poor strike rate.
His loss of chance resulted in Ambati Rayudu’s gain. Rayudu performed excellently in the IPL and got a recall to the ODI team after two years. Currently it seems that Rayudu is set to become India’s No. 4 batsman in the World Cup.
With his last chance going away, Rahane finally opened up on his lack of consistency in selection. He took an indirect jive at the selectors and believes its high time to put his case forward and talk about irregularity in selection.
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The team should give more assurance
In an interview with the Hindu, Rahane said:
I am quite shy. But I prefer to let my bat speak but sometimes it’s important to speak the truth. I have always believed the team comes first and respected the management and the selectors’ decision. I will continue to do that. But in the end, it is important that your performance is recognized.
“The point is that if as a player I have always played for the team, then I deserve chances more consistently. That’s the least I am asking,” he added.
Before being used as No. 4 batsman, Rahane was used as an opener against the Windies and Australia in 2017. Although Rahane said that he can bat at any position, he also cleared that he needs confidence and assurance from the team management.
“I said ‘whatever you prefer’ because the team wanted it,” Rahane said. “But every individual needs confidence and positive vibes like ‘yes, you are there and you are doing it for the team’. I think everyone knows that if someone is backing you, the player gets the confidence to play fearless and positive cricket.”
The veteran Test batsman has so far played 90 ODIs for the Men in Blue. In those 90 games, Rahane has averaged 35.62 and has a strike rate of 78.63.