Rahane: ‘Respect your opponents’

Rahane also emphasised the need to be fresh in a five-Test series. "The first thing is to be fresh till the last Test match. We played a five-match series in England and we got an idea how to approach one."

“I always believe you have to give respect to your opponents whether their bowling attack is new or experienced. For us it is important to focus on our strengths."   -  PTI

At the press conference in Mumbai, the Chairman of the senior national selection committee, M.S.K. Prasad stated that his committee was sure as to who would lead the team in the absence of Virat Kohli on the field; and that’s Mumbai middle order Ajinkya Rahane. They had named him vice-captain for the five-Test series against England.

When asked if the selectors have recognised him for his success across all three formats, Rahane said: “I have said this before. I am really happy that the BCCI and the selectors have given me this responsibility. As a player you learn a lot of things, but as a vice-captain your mind is always alert. As a player and vice-captain, I’m really happy that I am learning a lot of things. I’m sure this will bring the best out of me.”

Rahane emphasised the need to be fresh in a five-Test series. “The first thing is to be fresh till the last Test match. We played a five-match series in England and we got an idea how to approach one. That was a great learning experience for all of us, when we played in England as a young unit. We’ve been playing good cricket, but the important thing is to be fresh till the fifth match.”

He shared the views expressed by England’s Stuart Broad: “I think a team will have the opportunity to come back into the series when you are playing five matches. I think playing against England will be a challenge for all of us. Yes, their bowling attack is comparatively new, especially their spin bowlers. Their batsmen, they’ve played here, Alistair Cook, Joe Root and all. So I’m sure it will be a good series.

“I always believe you have to give respect to your opponents whether their bowling attack is new or experienced. For us it is important to focus on our strengths rather than thinking about their bowling attack or batting strengths. We will be playing to our potential. We want to dominate this series, we’ve been playing some very good cricket in the last one, one and a half years. So it is important to start well here in Rajkot and continue that momentum in the series.”