After cricketers like Sachin Tendulkar and Yuvraj Singh wished Ajinkya Rahane on his 30th birthday it was the turn of his India skipper Virat Kohli to wish his deputy in the longest format of the game. “The overseas season is about to start and here’s wishing one of the finest we’ve got, @ajinkyarahane88, a  very Happy Birthday Jinx. Keep playing those crucial knocks!” Virat wrote from his official twitter handle.

There is no denying the fact that Rahane is one of the mainstays in the Indian middle order. When it comes to the longest format, Rahane is at his best. He has played several brilliant knocks, especially in overseas conditions. Rahane is as important as a Virat Kohli to India especially in the longest format. During India’s previous tour of England in 2014, it was a brilliant century from Rahane which helped them win the Lord’s Test.

On a green track, Rahane scored a sensational hundred. He counter-attacked the English attack with disdain after India were reduced to 145/7 at one stage. He helped India get past the 300 mark. On the last day, it was an Ishant Sharma special which eventually handed India a victory at the Mecca of Cricket. Despite his prowess in overseas conditions, Rahane was dropped from India’s playing XI in the first two Tests against South Africa earlier in the year.

PTI Photo by Shashank Parade(PTI10_9_2016_000070A)

Also Read: Yuvraj Singh wishes Ajinkya Rahane on his 30th Birthday

Rahane’s current form 

He came into the series on the back of some poor performances against Sri Lanka in the home Test series. Hence he was dropped from the playing XI in favour of Rohit Sharma. He made his comeback in the final Test in Johannesburg after India lost the first two Tests. He looked in great touch and scored 40 off in both the innings. Given the dangerous condition of the pitch, it was impressive knocks from Rahane.

In the absence of Virat Kohli, Rahane has been handed over the national captaincy for the one-off Test against Afghanistan. It is slated to begin from 14th June. He is totally different in his approach to a Kohli. However, he has already shown his captaincy skills during India’s victory against Dharamsala last year. He led his troops pretty well and will be hoping for much of the same in the historic Test against Afghanistan.

Ajinkya Rahane.
Ajinkya Rahane. Credits: Getty Images

Also Read: Five ODI players with most destructive power-hitting capabilities