There was no pumping of the fist in the air, no exchange of words and yet the bowler knew that Ajinkya Rahane is the man who has owned him.
The four-match Test series between India and Australia was full of excitement and on more than one occasion, situations got better off the players. There were sledges, abuses and signals without which the cricket could have still been played. In the middle of all the action was one man, Virat Kohli. The Indian captain was animated throughout the series both on and off the field and didn’t back off from showing his emotions. When he had to leave the game midway in Ranchi, most people said India missed Kohli’s aggression in the field as the game ended in a draw.
Watch the highlights from Day 4:
Comes the Dharamshala Test and it is being reported that Virat Kohli will have to sit out for this important clash because of his shoulder injury. The news had everyone including some of the experts, nervous. Australian captain Steve Smith also revealed that his side is far more relaxed in Virat Kohli’s absence. He said Ajinkya Rahane is a far more chilled guy. Rahane, who in a world of T20 and hard-hitting game, continues to work hard for his runs, building innings one run at a time. Rahane, who is often seen as a hard-working and industrious player but never as an aggressive one. Rahane, who for most fans is a modern version of Rahul Dravid. The question was whether Rahane will be able to lead his side to similar aggression as Kohli or not.
The new Indian captain was up for the task. He marshalled his troop with precision, guided them with vision and finished the game in style leading from the front. In the second innings, he smashed 38 runs from 27 balls after coming in to bat when India had lost two quick wickets while chasing in the fourth innings. In the 20th over of the innings, he smoked Pat Cummins out of the park for two back to back sixes. There was no pumping of the fist in the air, no exchange of words and yet the bowler knew that Ajinkya Rahane is the man who has owned him.
Watch Ajinkya Rahane’s brilliant catch in the slips:
Speaking to the media after the match, Virat Kohli said, “I spoke to Jinks (Rahane’s team nickname) before the game and he asked me what I feel. I said, this is your game and you have to be comfortable with playing play four or five bowlers. He instantly said, five bowlers, because he understands the workloads of the guys throughout the whole season.”
Virat Kohli carries a different brand of aggression but going into the match with five specialist bowlers despite knowing that your best batsman is not playing the game, is a different brand of aggression that Ajinkya Rahane carries. With this performance in Dharamshala, it was proved that even in Virat Kohli’s world of aggression, Rahane’s class sets him apart.