Ajinkya Rahane (Image courtesy: AFP)
Ajinkya Rahane (Image courtesy: AFP)

Ajinkya Rahane is gearing up for leading India in one-off Test against Afghanistan. The Test will be played from June 14 at M.A.Chidambaram Stadium, Bangalore. Rahane whose captaincy record stands at one win against Australia (only Test) is excited to take on responsibility in absence of regular captain Virat Kohli.

Speaking to Times of India, Rahane spoke about India’s upcoming England tour and his knock at Johannesburg against South Africa. On Afghanistan Test, he said: “I’m looking forward to it. After the IPL, it’s almost like a start of a season, so there is so much to look forward to. There are processes to be put in place on the personal front, responsibilities to be carried out (as captain in the one-off game).”

On upcoming 5-Test series against England, Rahane said:  “When you play overseas, it’s that attitude which matters, more than your skills. Skill-wise, most cricketers are more or less similar. What probably adds notches to a team’s overall performance is the intent with which you approach a game. It gives you an opportunity to come back into the contest. South Africa is a classic example. The contest would’ve been completely a different one moving forward from the Wanderers Test. But a five-Test series has other challenges too. For example, it is important to remain fresh throughout the series. The start is always important but carrying that momentum till the very end is equally crucial. The mind should not get tired. That’s the key.”

Talking about his knock versus South Africa, Rahane explained: “It’s great that I got an opportunity on a wicket like that one. I knew I was batting really well in the nets. I could feel it. Normally you do have an idea about your game but on a wicket like that, it’s your guts that count. When the ball goes from right next to your helmet or even if you’re sitting in the dressing room and watching your teammates bat in similar conditions, it’s very easy for someone to start thinking a bit negatively. But in that Test, on that wicket, every batsman in the team was like ‘ok, right now I want to go out there on that wicket in this kind of a situation’. That’s exactly how even my mind was thinking too. Even a century in a different scenario would probably not give me the kind of joy that 48 did.”