Sanjay Manjrekar believes that Ajinka Rahane’s dismissals are associated with his state of mind and tentativeness, after the vice-captain was dismissed attempting to pull Neil Wagner on the third day of the WTC final. Manjrekar feels that Rahane lacks the commitment while playing shots.
India’s Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane led his side’s charts with a 117-ball 49 in India’s innings of 217, but the experienced campaigner was dismissed to Neil Wagner’s short pitch delivery when he miscued a tame pull to gift a catch to Tom Latham at square leg.
This wasn’t the first time Rahane had become the victim of playing bad shots as in both the innings of the Brisbane Test he went for loose drives, to bad balls, gifting his wicket to Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummin respectively. Against England, too, in Ahmedabad he poked James Anderson’s back of the length delivery to allow Ben Stokes to take a catch at second slip, while in the first Test in Chennai he hit an innocuous Dom Bess full-toss straight to Joe Root at short cover.
Cricketer turned commentator Sanjay Manjrekar noted that Rahane’s bizarre dismissals, of late, are down to his mind more than anything else.
“I won’t analyse the dismissal too much, the interesting thing about Rahane is that there is not one particular mode of dismissal for him in the last few years, when he’s got low scores. I have always associated his dismissals and run of low scores to his state of mind. If you saw the pull shot before he got out to, there was a lot of tentativeness and not the kind of commitment that you see from a Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma or a Shubman Gill in playing a pull shot,” Manjrekar said, speaking on ESPN Cricinfo.
Rahane was far from the fluent 2014 version of himself that dispatched the English attack to all parts, but the vice-captain, nevertheless, dug in, spending 117 balls in the middle to showcase his resilience. Manjrekar lauded the right-hander for applying himself, but reckoned that the Rahane that turned up on Day 2 and 3 was the same inconsistent version that we’ve been witness to, for the past couple of years.
“The same Rahane we have been seeing for the last many years (turned up today). Barring one or two innings, like that hundred he got against Australia in Melbourne, his form has tended to drop. Which is interesting as after a hundred your form generally takes off, but he (Rahane) just got a string of low scores. I thought he really applied well himself (on his innings) so credit to him for going through the grind.”