The pitch for the first Test in Chennai was widely criticized after England went on to score over 500 runs in the first innings with ease. Many pundits and England quick Jofra Archer slammed the flat pitch at Chepauk. Reports suggest that the chief curator has been sacked. And the local groundsmen are making the pitch for the second Test.
India vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane feels that the new pitch, which is darker in color, will be a rank turner. The Chennai pitch has traditionally been heaven for spinners. Rahane adds that the team will lock in a plan after seeing how the pitch behaves in the first session.
“[The pitch] Looks completely different, I am sure it will turn from day one. We will have to wait and see how it behaves in the first session and take it from there. We have to forget what happened in the first Test and focus on this and play good cricket,” said Rahane during the virtual press conference.
“And we know these conditions really well. We have to put our best foot forward tomorrow and play as a team. I thought our spinners bowled well in the 1st Test. If you see the second innings, especially Ashwin bowled really well, there is not much concern over their performance,” he added.
“You can’t judge a player over one or two matches,” Ajinkya Rahane defends Rohit Sharma
After an impressive performance Down Under, Rohit Sharma had a horrible start to the home season. Rohit registered scores of 6 and 12 in the series opener as he fell prey to two great deliveries. As his poor performance garnered widespread criticism for him, Rahane came out in his defense. The Mumbai batsman urged fans not to judge him based on a couple of games for he is a class player.
“Rohit (Sharma) is an important member of our team. A big score doesn’t imply that you have to score a century or 150. He made important contributions in Australia. You can’t judge a player over 4-6 innings or one or two matches,” said Rahane.
“You need to back your players and Rohit is the kind of cricketer who has won matches for India. We know when Rohit gets set he scores big. We’re really happy to have Rohit in the team,” he added.
Talking of his form, Rahane is confident that he will be able to bounce back. He feels that having played no Tests in India for a long time is why he is facing difficulty in settling in right away. The Indian vice-captain pointed out that he has been scoring runs lately and a temporary dip in form shouldn’t be blown out of proportion.
“We are playing at home after two years. It’s all about the team, not about any individual. If you look at my last 10-15 Tests, you will find some runs there,” said Rahane.