Happy Birthday Ajinkya Rahane: Top performances by gifted batter in Test cricket – Firstcricket News, Firstpost

Among the Indian batters who have proved capable of shining on overseas pitches, India’s former Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane is high on the list. Since playing his first game in white jersey in 2013 against Australia, Rahane has become an integral part of the Test squad and gifted us with a lot of match-winning performances over the years.

The Mumbai-based batter knocked on the selectors’ door after plundering 1,089 runs in his second Ranji Trophy season. He made his debut for the blue jersey during India’s Tour to England in 2011.

India’s Ajinkya Rahane plays a shot during the second day of the second Test cricket match between South Africa and India at The Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg on January 4, 2022. AFP

During his over one decade-long career, Rahane has featured in every format of the game. In his 90 ODI appearances, he has recorded 2,962 runs. The top-order batter has fetched 12 centuries in 82 Tests registering 4,931 runs at a batting average of 38.52. Rahane has also scored 375 runs in 20 T20I  matches.

On his 34th birthday today, let’s recall some splendid performances of Ajinkya Rahane:

112 vs Australia at Melbourne (2020): India was hearing the calls of 4-0 whitewash by Australia coming from all corners after their horrid performance in the first Test. In the second clash, Ajinkya Rahane walked in to take charge of the game when the Indian side was struggling at 116 for 4. With the assistance of Rishabh Pant and Ravindra Jadeja, Rahane’s 223-ball 112 helped India to reach a total of 326 in the first innings. In the second innings, he also smashed the winning run while chasing 70 on board.
103 vs England at Lord’s (2014): In the second Test of the 2014 Tour of England, Ajinkya Rahane faced the English bowling attack of James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Ben Stokes on a green track at Lord’s. While no Indian batter managed to cross the 40-run mark, the gifted right-handed batter notched a ton scoring 103 runs off 154 deliveries, which turned the game in India’s favour.
118 vs New Zealand at Wellington (2014): In the see-saw contest against the Blackcaps, Rahane fetched his maiden Test century. With India floundering at 6-man down in the first innings, the right-hander smashed 118 runs in 158 deliveries at a strike rate of 74.68, taking his team to 438. However, the match resulted a draw.
96 vs South Africa at Durban (2013): In the second Test against South Africa during his debut overseas tour, Rahane proved to be a promising batter. He registered 96 runs off 157 balls in the second innings, while the next best score on the Indian tally was 32. He also recorded a half-century in the first innings but his knocks failed to prevent a loss to the Proteas.
147 against Australia at Melbourne (2014): Trailing by 530 runs in the first innings, Rahane stitched a crucial fourth-wicket partnership with Virat Kohli to save India from the follow-on. He smashed a remarkable 171-ball 147 to help India put up 465 on board.

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