"Are we getting impatient? Not at this stage" - Vikram Rathour continues to back Pujara, Rahane

Ajinkya Rahane (left) and Cheteshwar Pujara. Pic: Getty Images
Ajinkya Rahane (left) and Cheteshwar Pujara. Pic: Getty Images
Renin Wilben Albert

Team India's batting coach Vikram Rathour has once again come out in support of struggling Indian batters Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara, backing them to come good soon.

Stripped of Test vice-captaincy, Rahane batted with freedom in both innings of the Centurion Test against South Africa. However, he could not convert starts and was dismissed for 48 and 20. Pujara, on the other hand, registered scores of 0 and 16.

Although India are in a commanding position to win the Centurion Test thanks to their pacers, concerns over their batting remain as the middle order collapsed in both innings. Speaking at a press conference at the end of the fourth day’s play, Rathour asserted:

"As far as Pujara and Rahane are concerned, they are trying their best, they are giving their best. Rahane was in really good touch but unfortunately, he got out, so has Pujara.”

The former India opener added that the coaching group and the team think tank are not getting impatient following Pujara and Rahane’s constant failures. Rathour pointed out:

"Pujara in past has played some important innings for us, you see these are challenging conditions, not many people have scored runs here. We need to be patient as long as they are trying their best, giving their best as coaching unit we are fine. Are we getting impatient? Not at this stage, I think."
Lowest Test top-score by Indian proper batters in a calendar year (1-7 position, min: 20 inns):67 - Ajinkya Rahane in 202173 - Cheteshwar Pujara in 201481 - Ajinkya Rahane in 201884 - Chetan Chauhan in 197984 - SS Das in 2001#SAvIND

Rahane last scored a Test hundred during the Boxing Day Test at the MCG against Australia last year. As for Pujara, his last Test was registered in Sydney during the New Year Test of 2019.

Rahane and Pujara’s Test record in 2021

India’s middle order has struggled in Test cricket right through 2021, and Rahane and Pujara’s poor form has been symptomatic of the team’s woes.

Rahane has scored 479 runs in 13 Tests at an average of 20.82, with two fifties and a best of 67. Pujara has done slightly better, having scored 702 runs in 14 Tests at an average of 28.08. The India No. 3 has registered six half-centuries, with a best of 91.

From India Tour of New Zealand,2019A.Rahane: Matches-17 Innings-31 Runs-751 @ 25.03C.Pujara : M-18 I-34 R-865 @ 26.21V.Kohli: M-14 I-25 R-652 @ 26.08Time for a revamped middle order??🤔(1/2)

Not only Rahane and Pujara, even Test skipper Virat Kohli has had a torrid year. The 33-year-old has registered 536 runs in 11 Tests, averaging 28.21 with a best of 72.

Edited by Sai Krishna


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