As Karun Nair vs Ajinkya Rahane debate snowballs!
The former may have scored a triple ton and may still miss out to Maharashtrian Ajinkya Rahane after Karun Nair notched a triple ton. Not for the first time has this happened, Andy Sandha, Len Hutton and Inamam-ul Haq have already followed that suite.
Going by the press conference today, it seems Virat Kohli has put a lid on the debate by opting for Rahane over Nair. Some sections may tout this as unfair and unjust, but how can you overlook Rahane’s performance over the last two years.
Kohli usually prefers to go in with a six batsman ploy (five batsman & wicketkeeper) when playing in India, in that scenario Karun misses out but if he was thinking of one extra batter then a pacer could have been dropped, making way for Karun Nair.
Rahane tough off late has not been in rollicking form. Ever since he returned to the team against England, he has paultry scores of 13, 1, 23, 26 & 0. That is 53 runs in five innings, no where close to his best. Talks were also making the rounds during the Kiwi series that Rahane has been found wanting when the ball is banged in short.
But how can one miss his record which is emphatic in Tests. Rahane has played 32 Tests and scored 2272 runs including eight hundreds.
One game doesn’t overshadow 2 years of hard work, he is the most solid batsman of our team in the test format: Virat Kohli on Ajinkya Rahane pic.twitter.com/vzEWb0aTnK
— ANI (@ANI_news) February 8, 2017
When you look at Rahane’s record before that, even against the Proteas at home slamming two back to back hundreds, you know he is supreme and cannot be sidelined.
Indian coach Kumble has also said that it is great to have such talent (Karun Nair) waiting in the wings, that gives you more cushion and options.
This also means that Nair will have to carry water in the middle, if he is not picked, which is most likely.
The other way to look at it is, Virat Kohli may be resting Rahane, who is coming back after suffering a finger injury, looking at Australia, the bigger picture. But that again is highly unlikely. All said and done, all eyes will be on Virat when he takes the team list out of his pocket during the toss.