Indian captain Ajinkya Rahane has said that instead of giving attention to the mind games played by the Australian camp, he would rather focus on his side and how he can help every individual perform to their true potential as the visitor’s eye a series-leveling win at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
In the lead-up to the Boxing Day Test, Australian head coach Justin Langer had said that he is happy that Indians are under considerable stress after having suffered a humiliating 8-wicket defeat in the last Test and that they would be looking to put new skipper Ajinkya Rahane under pressure.
Rahane will be leading the team in the absence of Virat Kohli for the remainder of the series. The Test vice-captain is under considerable pressure with regards to his own form as well as the team’s current position in the series.
However, Rahane feels that instead of taking pressure, he is looking at the current situation as a great opportunity to prove his worth.
”Australians are very good at playing mind games and I will let them do that. We are focussing on ourselves, what we want to do as a unit and we are going to back our every individual,” Ajinkya Rahane said in the virtual press-conference.
“It is a proud moment for me leading India, obviously it is a great opportunity, responsibility as well but I don”t want to take any pressure. I think what I want to do is back my team. So focus is not on me, it is all about team and how we want to do well as a team. We are focussing on that.” he added.
Rahane also revealed that Virat Kohli had a chat with the entire team before he left for India, where he urged the players to play for each other, help each other on the field and enjoy each other’s success.
“Yeah, Virat spoke to all of us, before leaving. We had our team dinner in Adelaide, so he spoke to all of us about staying in the moment, playing for each other and yeah enjoying each other”s success and help each other out on the field.” he added.”
India recorded their lowest Test total in history in Adelaide but Rahane said that one bad inning does not define this team. He instead reminded that India played well for a better part of the 1st Test before losing the game completely in one session.
“Talking about last Test match, see comparatively we had two good days, just one bad hour, where we actually lost it completely. The chat was all about backing ourself as an individual and as team, play to our strengths and whatever we have planned in the first Test match just stick to that.” he added.