"I do believe he has a point to prove"- Sunil Gavaskar feels Ajinkya Rahane has a massive role for India in WTC final
Former Indian legendary opener Sunil Gavaskar believes veteran batter Ajinkya Rahane could have a huge impact for Team India in the World Test Championship (WTC) final against Australia at The Oval beginning June 7.
Rahane had some impressive performances in the Ranji Trophy for Mumbai and also was in stunning form for the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the 2023 IPL season. Injuries to the likes of Rishabh Pant, Shreyas Iyer, and KL Rahul mean that Rahane may be the frontrunner for that No. 5 position in the WTC final.
Speaking exclusively to Star Sports on ‘Follow the Blues’, here's what Sunil Gavaskar had to say about Rahane:
“He’s got a lot of experience having played in England, having scored runs in England. So, yes, I think he is going to be crucial down at number 5. And yes, I do believe he has a point to prove, I still feel he has got plenty of cricket left in him, and this is a wonderful opportunity for him. I’m hoping he will be able to grab this opportunity with all the experience that he has and make a place for him back in the Indian team.”
Sunil Gavaskar on the big challenge for India
Sunil Gavaskar feels that Team India may look a bit undercooked into the WTC final as most of the players in the squad are coming on the back of having played T20 cricket in the IPL. Apart from Cheteshwar Pujara, who has been playing County Cricket, Gavaskar reckons others will need to adapt to the longest format.
On this, Gavaskar stated:
“The biggest test will be the fact that just about everybody will be coming out of a T20 format, and test cricket is a longer format. So, I think that’s going to be the big challenge. They have only Cheteshwar Pujara who has been playing in the English County Championship, so he will be the only guy who has played the longer format in these conditions, so that’s going to be the big challenge for them.”
Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara, and others have begun their preparations for the WTC final. The likes of Ravindra Jadeja and Ajinkya Rahane are expected to arrive soon.