Mumbai team head coach Amol Muzumdar recently stated that Ajinkya Rahane looked in good touch despite his poor string of scores The experienced middle-order batter's place in the playing XI is under threat following a poor tour of South Africa.
The Test veteran is currently training with the Mumbai team. With Team India playing a series of white-ball games, it gives the 33-year-old a good opportunity to immerse himself in the domestic circuit and regain his form. Muzumdar added that Rahane is looking forward to the Ranji Trophy, which begins on February 16.
Speaking to PTI, Muzumdar said:
"Ajinkya is definitely looking forward to it. We have met a few times now, he has been practising with the Mumbai team. He has had a couple of sessions already. Looked absolutely in fine touch."
The legendary Mumbai batter continued:
"We don't have to look too much into the future but what is lying ahead of us is the Ranji Trophy. They both are due for a big one. I feel it is just a question of confidence. Sometimes batting is nothing but confidence."
Mumbai have been drawn alongside Saurashtra, Odisha and Goa in Group Elite D and will play their fixtures in Ahmedabad.
Rahane and Pujara will face each other in the Ranji Trophy group stage
Mumbai are scheduled to face Saurashtra in Ahmedabad in a Group D fixture of the Ranji Trophy. The contest will pit the under-fire duo of Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara against each other. Both batters are currently on thin ice with respect to their places in the Indian team.
Pujara reportedly batted for 90 minutes in the nets, working on his technique against the old ball. The 34-year-old has often lost his wicket trying to play inside the line, especially with incoming deliveries around the fourth stump. Saurashtra coach Niraj Odedra said to PTI:
"Pujara is not like other batters. He always has a specific plan when he walks into the nets. He is very meticulous in the way he trains. Today, he wanted to practice against reverse swing which he may encounter in the Sri Lanka series."
Following a poor tour of England, the home series against New Zealand and the away tour of South Africa, Pujara and Rahane will be competing against the likes of Hanuma Vihari and Shreyas Iyer for their positions in the middle order.