In the Boxing Day Test at the MCG in 2020, Ajinkya Rahane faced the unlikely prospect of digging India out of the 36-run-sized hole he had dug for himself in Adelaide. Sufficiently, he had to do so not only as a batsman but also as the captain of a side which, before his days, had progressed towards the toughest nadir.
Thus, given that difficulties were arising against Ajinkya Rahane, given that the Australian team had shed blood and intended to freeze the Indians. Nevertheless, at the time, the Delhi Capital batsman struggled to historic proportions, scoring superb innings in the first innings, paving the way for a remarkable series win.
Since November 2016, he has batted 29 times under domestic conditions. With alarm, his average increased to 32.33 during that phase, with Ajinkya Rahane scoring only a solitary ton, coincidentally against a South African bowling attack that stood on its feet.
In addition to the above knock, he has scores of more than six fifty, only two of which have come against army countries. The rest, precariously, are scored against Bangladesh and the West Indies.
Although the Tigers and Caribbean outfit have enough quality to cause strange flutter, one cannot put them in the same bracket as one of the other top-drawer test teams in world cricket.
However the more worrying aspect is that Ajinkya Rahane has almost always found ways to get out despite being set at the crease during that particular tenure – an aspect that is a cardinal sin on Indian tracks.
On several occasions, Ajinkya Rahane has been out of the ‘catch’ when tried to leave the ball alone or attack with more punishment. In other words, he often does not find himself in a man’s land as far as his shot selection is concerned.
After this, he tries to offer the fielding side so that he can be taken out. On the days when he escapes with those inconsolable moments, he goes on to a remarkable score. Nevertheless, in the international arena, which is very inefficient, it is not a trick that leads to continued success.
In fact, even against England in the first innings in Chennai, Ajinkya Rahane did a full toss in the general direction of Joe Root on extra cover. Although the English captain did very well for dripping catches from thin air, such a mistake was unacceptable, especially when the surface started playing tricks.
Also, Ajinkya Rahane has a tendency to pull a particular rabbit out of a hat, once in a while, meaning that he regularly survives the glare of the public eye.
While those knocks are very exceptional, the frequency definitely leaves a lot to be desired, not just because the batsman has the talent to justify the hope, but also because it is imperative that India have the number 5. But be a reliable batsman when he is with five bowlers.
Contextually, Ajinkya Rahane has had the shortest period of two Test centuries for 6 innings since 2017, which came between 102 against West Indies in August 2019 and 115 against South Africa in Ranchi in 2019.
The last time he crossed the 100-run mark before the essay against the West Indies was his return to Colombo against Sri Lanka in August 2017. Between those two tons, he played 28 innings, and In college Recorded 5 scores above fifty.
Thus, showing that he is not a batsman that India can hold – an element that has led the Men in Blue, is placing its bets and looking for bowlers who are looking for deficiencies. To remove the willow to remove. His primary middle-order batsman.
Additionally, when Ajinkya Rahane’s runs dried up, during that phase, the rest of the lower-order ranks were counted, especially in India – again, something that pointed to the batsman’s shortcomings that those around him Is being masked by
Thus, at this moment, Ajinkya Rahane seems to have hit a brick wall as far as his luck in India is concerned. The right-handed batsman is not only scoring runs, but he is also out in the top of Manip, meaning the batting line-up, which is heavily dependent on Messrs. Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli are seen struggling. Whenever the pair leaves cheaply.
However, most said that it has forced India to pick bowlers who can bat as well, preferring only those bowlers who give them the greatest chance of taking 20 wickets in an encounter.
While that particular strategy has revealed some gems, the likes of Kuldeep Yadav and oftentimes, Ravichandran Ashwin have suffered, India is just not confident that their middle order will score the expected runs.
Having said that, Ajinkya Rahane still represents one of the most sought after men in blue abroad and it may not be prudent to dismiss them in complete oblivion. Nevertheless, no one can ignore the lack of his critical run and significant burden on the rest of the team and its balance.
A month or so ago, when confronted with an almighty mountain, Ajinkya Rahane portrayed Hwitheel to rely on his methods and build an innings that would live long in memory. However, perhaps it is time for India not to make the mistake of resting on their laughter and waiting for a similar knock, a luxury that the team cannot afford easily.
And, rather ironically, after emerging as a wreck, a pair of fortresses scatter an even bigger pit for Ajinkya Rahane – the batsman, to achieve his highest cricando as a captain.
Published on 07 February 2021, 8:53 PM IST