'Don't know how to describe this': Emotional Ajinkya Rahane struggles to find words after India beat Australia
India’s historic three-wicket win over Australia in Brisbane left Ajinkya Rahane numb as the India stand-in captain initially struggled to find words to describe his feelings after India won the series 2-1 to retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
Rahane, however, gathered himself quickly to state the win ‘means a lot’. "It means a lot to us. I don't know how to describe this, but our boys showed a lot of character and determination after the Adelaide Test," Rahane, who led India in the absence of Virat Kohli, said.
India chased down to 328 on the final day of the Test against top-class Australian bowling attack to claim the series 2-1. This was India’s first victory at the Gabba in Brisbane and Australia first defeat at the venue in 32 years.
Watch | India Vs Australia: Pant, Gill lead India to historic win at Gabba, seal series
"I'm really proud of each individual. The conversation between Pujara and me was that he would bat normal, and I would take it on," said Rahane who pushed the acceleration button with his brisk 24-run knock and he said that was indeed the plan.
The Mumbai right-hander heaped praise on Chetshwar Pujara, Shubman Gill, Rishabh Pant, Washington Sundar – the heroes of India’s run chase.
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“Credit to Pujara, the way he handled the pressure was magnificent. Rishabh and Washington were very good at the end."
Rahane also said the addition of Washington Sundar, who was drafted in because of a spate of injuries to senior players, brought balance to the side. "Taking 20 wickets was the key, so we opted for five bowlers. Sundar brought the balance in place of (Ravindra) Jadeja. The intention was clear to play five bowlers.
"(Mohammed) Siraj played two Tests, (Navdeep) Saini just one, so it was inexperienced but the character shown by the bowlers and everyone else was incredible," he said.
Pant timed his innings to perfection in a 138-ball 89 as India galloped to a record 328-run chase at the Gabba.
Pant's stellar innings was only one of a slew of heroic efforts by the Indian side, with opener Subman Gill (91) and a battered Cheteshwar Pujara (56) helping them mow down the total with defiant half-centuries.
(With PTI inputs)
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