Former Australia leg-spinner Shane Warne believes Indian stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane's century in the Boxing Day Test at the MCG is one of the finest knocks by an opposition captain on Australian soil.
The 32-year-old scored 112 runs and helped the visitors take a huge first-innings lead of 131 runs. Shane Warne took to Twitter to congratulate Ajinkya Rahane on his brilliant innings under pressure. He tweeted:
"One of the best oppositions captains knock on Aussie shores I reckon! Well played @ajinkyarahane88."
Ajinkya Rahane led by example in Virat Kohli's absence
Team India had suffered a shocking batting collapse in the second innings of the first Test at the Adelaide Oval, which saw them lose the match inside three days. India were embarrassingly bundled out for just 36 runs - their lowest ever Test total.
The visitors were also going to be without the services of skipper Virat Kohli (paternity leave) and Mohammed Shami (fractured wrist) for the rest of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
In these testing circumstances, Ajinkya Rahane took over the reins and instilled belief in his side that they could stage a comeback in the series.
Despite losing the toss at the MCG, Team India restricted the hosts to just 195 in their first innings.
While batting, India found themselves in a precarious position at 64 for 3. At this point the ghosts of the batting collapse at Adelaide could have haunted the Men in Blue.
However, Ajinkya Rahane ensured his side took a decisive lead in the first innings, scoring a magnificent hundred - his 12th in Tests and first as India captain. It was Rahane's willingness to dig deep and wear down the Australian bowlers that impressed Shane Warne the most.
At the end of day three, Australia are reeling at 133-6 and have a lead of just 2 runs. Ajinkya Rahane's aggressive captaincy has brought Team India to the brink of one of their most famous overseas wins.
The visitors have a great chance to level the series and take all the winning momentum into the third Test.Published 28 Dec 2020, 16:34 IST