India vs England | Batsmen should've defended better despite challenging conditions, says Ajinkya Rahane

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India vs England | Batsmen should've defended better despite challenging conditions, says Ajinkya Rahane

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SportsCafe Desk

08/11/2018

Ajinkya Rahane has asserted that the Indian batsmen, who folded the first innings at just 107 in 35.2 overs, needed to apply themselves more despite the bowling friendly condition at Lord's. The Indian vice captain, however, did add that the Indian side can learn a lot from the performance.

After suffering a close loss in the first Test, India is all set to play the second Test of their England tour at the Lord's. The first day of the Test was washed out by rain and the play started directly on the second day. This made the weather conditions harsh and the English bowling attack had become more severe as James Anderson pierced through the battling line up and managed to pick up 5 wickets in the first innings of the second Test. India was bowled out for 107 runs and the Indian vice-captain was quick to point out that the batsmen should've defended the innings better despite the challenging conditions.

“You have to accept your mistake. Acceptance is the key, I think, when you play in England. It’s not about getting caught behind, even run out, but you have got to accept your mistake and move on. The quicker we learn from our mistakes, the better for us. I am sure everyone will learn from this innings and there is a long way to go in this match as well as the series. May be we will need to learn from their batting unit how to bat in such conditions, which shots are important, which shots you can play, etc. Many times in England you cannot only stay defensive. You need to understand which shots you can play — may be the cut shot or the late cut. So the earlier you learn all that the better it would be for you,” Rahane said, reported TOI. 

“I don’t think you can get any more challenging conditions than this (in Test cricket) especially with Duke ball in these weather conditions. But as a batsman you have to back your ability. It is all about intent out there, of not only scoring runs but also leaving the ball and defending well. As a batsman it is always a challenge to come here and play against this kind of attack." 

The vice-captain, not only spoke about the Indian batting and the challenging conditions, but he also spoke largely of the English bowling attack, especially praising James Anderson, who had proved himself by restricting India's goal to score a big total in both the matches. He dismissed 5 crucial players in the first innings of the second game. 

“These were definitely challenging conditions. Anderson did not bowl a short ball. He was just bowling at same spot , four or five metre length and that is really crucial on this wicket. If you are bowling that length, you got to bowl consistently, then as a batsman you have to leave the ball or back your methods consistently. It is all about patience on these conditions and trusting your methods and backing your ability. They used the conditions really well. I thought the wicket, because of the weather we cannot control. First half, when the game was on and off, it was difficult for batting team to switch on and off. But when you play at the highest level, no excuses. I would like to give credit to English bowling team ,Anderson, Stuart Broad and others , they bowled really well as a unit,” Rahane said.

Rahane also mentioned how  Cheteshwar Pujara’s unfortunate run out hurt all the teammates who were already bothered because of the interruptions due to the rain.

“It definitely hurts as a teammates, and I am sure even Pujara will be upset about his run out. The run out definitely hurt us and the weather after that too. I think we did not get to play for 3-4 hours, so definitely as a team you feel really bad,” Rahane explained.

Despite the low total, Rahane has stated that he still has faith in the team and they can bounce back and make a strong come back for the rest of the match and series.

“You cannot be too harsh on yourself as an individual and team when you get conditions like this. You have to back yourself as a player and team. I felt we were right there skill wise. There is still a long way to go in this match. We have to bowl well, and our bowling unit is doing well. If weather permits, I am sure our bowlers will bowl in the right areas well. Cricket is a funny game, we still have to back ourselves and get positivemind set back. It is important that you back yourself in English conditions and trust your methods. I think still you need luck in these conditions. But there are no complaints at all, we have to bowl and field well,” Rahane concluded. 

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