‘A chance to go back & do a bit of work’: NZ legend suggests Rahane to ‘make way for Kohli’ in Mumbai Test
Ajinkya Rahane's lean patch in the red-ball format continued as the stand-in India captain was dismissed on four in the second innings of the ongoing Test against New Zealand in Kanpur. The right-handed batter was trapped LBW by Ajaz Patel, as the tourists got themselves back in the contest rattling the Indian batting order.
Former New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori while analysing Rahane's batting in the second innings made an interesting suggestion for the second encounter, which starts from December 3 in Mumbai.
The former Kiwi spinner feels with Virat Kohli returning Rahane should be the one making way for the India skipper. Although calling Rahane a “solid player”, Vettori suggested that the senior batter should be dropped, which could help him hit the “reset” button.
“I still think Rahane is still a solid player. He looks like he wants to be aggressive; the way he is playing doesn’t feel tentative. but he is getting out. In a lot of ways, being dropped and having the ability to come back and resettle everything as a batsman, particularly at the Test level, can weigh you down,” Vettori told ESPNcricinfo.
“If they [Indian team management] leave him out of the next Test match, I don’t think it will be a death-knell for his career; it will just be a one-Test dropping, because it just resets everything, gives him a chance to go back and do a bit of work."
“I think it’s hard to drop someone [Iyer] who has scored a century on Test debut against a quality side. So, it will probably be Rahane who will make way [for Kohli],” he added.
Rahane had earlier added 35 in the first innings before he was cleaned up by Kiwi quick Kyle Jamieson.
Meanwhile, Shreyas Iyer, who stood as the team's leading run-scorer put 105 in 171 balls and is going strong in the second. He has so far completed his half-century, making him the first Indian to smash a Test century and half-century on debut.
India have so far extended their lead to above 190, with Iyer and wicketkeeper-batter Wriddhiman Saha present in the middle.