Ajinkya Rahane has revealed a special, but unusual piece of advice given to him by Rahul Dravid before India's tour of Australia. Rahane explained that Dravid had suggested him not bat much in the nets, and instead use the time to focus on his captaincy.
Ajinkya Rahane took over the reins of Team India from Virat Kohli after the visitors' gut-wrenching defeat in Adelaide. His magnificent century in the next Test was the inflection point in the tour, with the interim-skipper leading India to an unbelievable series win thereafter.
In conversation with Harsha Bhogle, Ajinkya Rahane expressed his astonishment at receiving such a tip from his role model.
"Rahul bhai actually called me before the series, when we were leaving to Australia from Dubai. He said, 'Don't take any stress, I know you are leading the team after the first Test. Don't worry about anything, just be strong mentally. Don't bat a lot in the nets', (which is) unlike Rahul bhai," said Ajinkya Rahane
However, the Mumbaikar further remarked that the uncanny advice actually helped him feel better.
"Rahul bhai loves batting, and he was like 'that's the mistake I did'. He said, 'don't bat a lot in the nets, your preparation is really good, you're batting so well. So, don't take any pressure. Just think about how you are going to lead the team, how you are going to give confidence to the players. Don't worry about the result, it will take care of itself'. That conversation really made it easy -- Rahul bhai telling me to not bat a lot in the nets. It was really good," added Rahane.
Besides his leadership success, Rahane concluded the memorable tour as the fifth-highest scorer, with 268 runs at an average of 38.29.
Rahul Dravid's message to Ajinkya Rahane after India's series win
Earlier, Ajinkya Rahane had talked about Rahul Dravid's messages to the team after India's stunning victories in the Boxing Day Test and the final Test at the Gabba. In an interview with The Indian Express, Rahane had said:
“We talk over the phone, exchange messages. He messaged me after the Melbourne match and immediately after the Brisbane match, saying how proud he was of the team.”
Ajinkya Rahane will be back in action as Team India's vice-captain in the upcoming Test series against England.