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"Great to see the boys stepping up and taking their opportunities" - Rahul Dravid weighs in after India's series win against New Zealand

Rahul Dravid got his first Test win under the belt as India's head coach.
Rahul Dravid got his first Test win under the belt as India's head coach.

India sealed a Test series win against New Zealand with a clinical performance at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. India won the match by a comprehensive margin of 372 runs, their biggest margin of victory. This was also India's first Test series win under the tenure of new head coach Rahul Dravid.

The 372-run victory is #TeamIndia's biggest victory by runs in Test cricket! #INDvNZ https://t.co/Kfrpb1zv3i

Mayank Agarwal was adjudged the Player of the Match as he laid the platform for his side in both innings with a sublime 150 in the first innings, followed by a startling 62 in the second.

Dravid was pleased with his side's performance after they wrapped up proceedings swiftly on Day Four. Jayant Yadav bagged four wickets on the final day while the player of the series, Ravichandran Ashwin, got the final wicket of Henry Nicholls to give India a 1-0 win in the two-match series.

In the post-game interview, Rahul Dravid suggested that the result was not as one-sided as it seemed. The new head coach was also pleased with his players grabbing their opportunities in the squad, which he believes will only help India in becoming a stronger side. Here's what Dravid had to say:

"I think it was good to finish the series as winners. We came close in Kanpur, not able to get that last wicket and had to work hard here. This result seems one-sided, but right through the series, we were made to work hard. There have been phases where we were behind and had to fight back. It's great to see the boys stepping up and taking their opportunities."

Dravid added:

"Yes, we were missing a few senior players. Credit to the guys who came in, Jayant had a difficult day yesterday but learnt from it today. Mayank, Shreyas, Siraj, who doesn't get a lot of opportunities. Axar, great to see his development with the bat in addition to what he can do with the ball. It gives us a lot of options as well, helps us become a stronger side."

"It's a good headache to have" - Rahul Dravid on Team India's selection dilemmas going forward

Team India head coach Rahul Dravid alongside Cheteshwar Pujara.
Team India head coach Rahul Dravid alongside Cheteshwar Pujara.

With young players like Mayank Agarwal and Shreyas Iyer grabbing their opportunities with both hands in this two-match series, the Indian team management have some selection dilemmas.

While the form of India's two mainstays, Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara has raised some eyebrows, Dravid opined that he hopes to have more selection headaches. He said:

"It's a good situation to be in, we've had injuries in the lead-up, so we need to manage our players physically and mentally, it's going to be a large part of my challenge, a challenge too for the selectors and the leadership group. It's a good (selection) headache to have."

Dravid added:

"There's a great desire to do well and everyone's pushing each other. I hope we have more headaches to have, as long as we have clear communication and we explain to the players why, I don't see it to be a problem."

With the South Africa series starting in less than two weeks' time, Team India will be hoping to pick up some more points in the World Test Championship cycle.

The South African tour will feature three Test matches and three ODIs, with the first Test starting on 17 December 2021.

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Edited by Ritwik Kumar
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