Former Indian cricketer labels ongoing test series as ‘make-or-break’ for Rahane and Pujara

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Rahane
Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara are the backbone of the Indian batting unit (Scroll.in)
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Team India will undergo a baptism by fire in the remaining three tests against Australia. In the absence of Virat Kohli, the leadership responsibilities will be taken by Ajinkya Rahane. The stand-in skipper is expected to play a huge role with the bat alongside Cheteshwar Pujara due to their experience. In fact, former India wicketkeeper Deep Dasgupta feels that the series could well be ‘make-or-break’ for the two cricketers. 

The senior batsmen had made a decent start in the first innings of the Adelaide Test but failed to convert it into a big score. In stark contrast, both were dismissed in tame fashion during India’s mammoth collapse ending in their lowest ever test total.

Rahane
Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara are the back bone of the Indian batting unit (Scroll.in)

Dasgupta noted that in time of immense crisis like this, Rahane and Pujara will have to step up. Speaking with Sports Today, he said:

“This is a big series for Ajinkya Rahane, Cheteshwar Pujara. Especially in these times of crisis, I think it’s going to be big. And there are a few comments in the comments section which mentions Ajinkya Rahane not doing anything outstanding,” Deep Dasgupta told Sports Today.

“He’s had a few good games in the last 2-3 years, not too many hundreds but I completely agree. It could be a make-or-break series for someone like Ajinkya Rahane and even, maybe to a certain extent, Cheteshwar Pujara,” he added.

Ajinkya Rahane had commented about his own form during a press conference held before the first test. The batsman has only been able to register 133 runs at an average just over 22 in the three tests held in 2020. Similar statistics unfold when it comes to Cheteshwar Pujara as well, which raises India’s concern going into the series with a 1-0 disadvantage.

In the upcoming tests, he is slated to take over Virat Kohli’s No.4 position with a new batsman expected to take up his old spot.

One of the primary cracks Rahane has to fix is the team selection which involves the combination as well. As reports suggest, India are apparently gearing to play five bowlers in the Boxing Day test with Ravindra Jadeja playing as the second spinner.

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