In the last three seasons of the Indian Premier League, Ajinkya Rahane appeared in 9, 2, and 7 games, respectively.
As the seasoned Indian batter continues to wow fans with his never-seen-before power hitting in this season’s Indian Premier League, Ajinkya Rahane hailed talisman MS Dhoni’s leadership for his metamorphosis at Chennai Super Kings. Rahane hit his second half-century of the season, an eye-popping 29-ball 71 not out, to lead CSK to a 49-run victory over KKR in their IPL match on Sunday.
“The only thing I can tell you… I really enjoyed my knock, and I’m really happy that we won this match,” Rahane said after the match.
Rahane credited Dhoni, saying he just needed an opportunity, which the World Cup-winning captain provided, to rediscover his form.
“You get to learn a lot when you play under Mahi Bhai (MS Dhoni).” “You always want to improve as a batter and cricketer,” he remarked.
“With the way the format is evolving, I believe as an individual you must continue to grow and develop your skills.” Rahane has 209 runs in five innings this season, with a batting average of 52.25. In addition, his tournament strike rate of 199.04 is the highest among specialized batters.
“My preparation has always been excellent. I continuously tried to improve myself and come up with one or two new shots.
“Now I’m able to show my shots because of my preparation so far and the opportunity given to me by my CSK,” Rahane added.
I can’t show how good I am till I play:
Rahane was with KKR previous season and saw minimal action under Shreyas Iyer’s guidance. He appeared in seven matches and scored 133 runs at a strike rate of less than 104.
The 34-year-old hitter, who was dropped from the Test squad following the series in South Africa in January last year, found new life after being acquired by the Dhoni-led side.
CSK was the only team to make a bid for Rahane at his starting price of Rs 50 lakh.
“The tipping point has arrived, and I’m finally getting opportunities to play.” I was overjoyed when CSK chose me. “They allowed me to play and express myself,” Rahane remarked.
“As you can see, I wasn’t getting many opportunities to play one or two years ago.” “How would you show what shots you have in your arsenal if you don’t play matches?” he said.
“You can’t show them your stroke-making if you’re not consistently playing.” When asked if the surprising knock was a reaction to the snub he received at KKR, Rahane answered, “You guys have to decide that.” It’s all about doing well for CSK for me, and I’ll let my bat do the talking.”
The best is still to come:
Rahane’s form may pave the way for a comeback in the white-ball format after being sidelined by the Indian team. Rahane last appeared in T20 Internationals in 2016 and hasn’t played an ODI since 2018.
But Rahane wants to stay in the present and continue to perform well for CSK.
“When someone does well, there will naturally be conversations.” I’m glad people are saying nice things about me and thinking about me. But my duty is to stay in the moment, focus on one game at a time, and contribute effectively for CSK.
“I still believe my best is yet to come, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed all the knocks (this season).”
“I just want to keep batting the same way and contributing to the team without worrying too much about myself, the results, and the outcome.” “I’ll be very happy if I can do that,” he remarked.
Rahane went on to say that he was always hungry to achieve well for his team, whether it was his franchise or India.
“My intent is to do well for the team, whether I’m playing for CSK or the Indian team.” Continue to think about the team rather than yourself, your own result, or the outcome.
“Intent is how badly you want to do well for your team and how seriously you think about your team.” So that’s all I’ve got,” he concluded.