With Virat Kohli returned home, the responsibility now falls on the shoulders of Ajinkya Rahane as India gear up for the Boxing Day Test against Australia, which starts on December 26 in Melbourne. The Mumbai batsman will be under immense pressure as he has been loaded with an extra burden of inspiring the team to bounce back after the Adelaide debacle.
At the same time, Cheteshwar Pujara will also be under the spotlight. India’s Test specialist will be required to deliver well in the absence of Kohli. Meanwhile, former Indian cricketer Deep Dasgupta has opined that it’s going to be a ‘make-or-break series’ for both the senior batsmen.
“This is a big series for Ajinkya Rahane, Cheteshwar Pujara. Specially 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 hasn’t done much with the bat this year in the longest format of the game. He has played 3 Test matches in 2020 and scored just 133 runs, at an average of just over 22. Neither Pujara has played any promising knock so far. This year, the India No 3 in Tests have amassed only 143 runs at 23.83 with 54 being his highest score.