Ricky Ponting, a former Australian legend, has made a big prediction about Ajinkya Rahane, claiming that the Indian batter can extend his Test career for another couple of years after striking a brave 89 against Australia in the WTC Final.
Rahane returned to the Indian Test team after a 17-month absence following some strong performances on the domestic circuit and in the IPL. The 34-year-old came to the fore on Friday morning when India was in serious danger at 152/6.
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Ajinkya Rahane was dismissed for 89, falling just short of his 13th Test century and first since his iconic 112 against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in December 2020. Rahane delivered another inning for the ages against the same opposition in the World Test Championship final at The Oval on Friday.
Ajinkya Rahane was released from the team following the January 2022 tour of South Africa. However, following excellent local performances, the seasoned middle-order hitter was recalled for the WTC final, and he stood up with usually gutsy innings as some of India’s top players faltered against Australia’s superior fast bowler.
At 71 for 4, India was in serious trouble as Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, and Virat Kohli were cheaply out of the game. Ajinkya Rahane, who was making his return to the team, partnered with Ravindra Jadeja and scored 71 runs for the fifth wicket before forming a 109-run partnership with Shardul Thakur, who serves as India’s chosen backup in challenging international Test matches.
“Ajinkya Rahane has got a real opportunity to prolong his Test career” – Ricky Ponting
Ajinkya Rahane’s courageous performance against Australia in the WTC Final on Friday has prompted Ricky Ponting to make a bold statement about his Test career. Rahane made 89 runs during his 17-month absence from the Indian Test team.
“He has made the most of his opportunity and that is all you can do,” Ricky Ponting told the ICC.
“I think there are two more Test matches in the West Indies after this before Rahul and Iyer are back, so he has got a real opportunity to prolong his Test career for another couple of years,” Ricky Ponting added.
Ajinkya Rahane came out and delivered one of the finest knocks for India in a recent away Test match after Australia’s pacers had rocked India. Rahane has done this in the past as well. Rahane had struck a valiant 103 on a green Lord’s pitch many years before to the 112 at the MCG in 2020, opening the door for a renowned Indian victory in 2014.