On the day he led India to a 2-1 Test series win at the Gabba as captain, Ajinkya Rahane was named Virat Kohli’s deputy for the first two Tests against England in the home series next month. Rahane, however, said that he does not want to even think of the England series, let alone leadership.
There had been talks and speculation that Rahane, after helping India win two of the last three Tests in Australia, could replace Kohli as skipper. Rahane, however, was modest after helping his team beat Australia.
“I was emotional. I still don’t know how it happened and how to describe this victory. But credit to each and every individual. Especially after the Adelaide, everyone contributed. It was not about me. It was all about the team. I look good because everyone contributed so I don’t give importance to myself. It was all about the team. Everyone contributed. For us it was all about having that character on the field and having that fighting spirit on the field. That’s what I always believe in,” Rahane told reporters after the match.
“Attitude is really important, work ethics are really important. I would like to thank our support staff here who backed me a lot,” he added.
“Right now, I am thinking about enjoying this victory. We are not thinking about the England series. Once we land in India we will think of the England series,” added Rahane.
He also said that many of the players in the final Test, without much experience of Test cricket, have proved that you don’t need to play 50 or 100 Tests to perform and win against top quality opposition.
India coach Ravi Shastri lavished praise on Rahane for the way he marshalled limited resources.
“I think he is very simple, very calm and composed. When he is out there, he is not ruffled by anything. He even led from the front. His innings in Melbourne was the one that really set us back on track. To challenge Australia, get a lead and then force a win. We haven’t looked back since and that is tremendous,” Shastri added.
Rahane said that they did not discuss anything after the disastrous defeat in the first Test and started afresh.
“We didn’t discuss anything about Adelaide Test and what happened there. It was all about focusing on the Melbourne Test from there on. I’ve said that many times. We showed character on the field and were not thinking of results. We were giving confidence to each and every individual. Attitude was fantastic on the field. We had great determination,” he said.