‘The key is to always remain three steps ahead of the opposition’

‘I like taking each day as it comes. Right now, the focus will be on the New Zealand series.’

‘I always strive to improve and I am satisfied with my performance in the Caribbean.’

 

during the 5th and final day of the 3rd Test between West Indies and India at Darren Sammy National Cricket Stadium Gros Islet, St. Lucia. Photo by WICB Media/Randy Brooks of Brooks Latouche Photography

He is expected to play an important role in the upcoming 13 Tests at home, but Ajinkya Rahane doesn’t want to look too far ahead, as it can clutter one’s mind.

“I know I have a job at hand but I never set targets beforehand. I believe setting targets take you too much into future. Looking too far ahead can clutter your mind. Instead, I like taking each day as it comes. Right now, the focus will be on the New Zealand series,” he told cricket updates during an interaction.

Rahane has always emphasised on doing his homework on the opposition and it will not be any different this time also when New Zealand visits India for a three-Test and five-ODI series, starting later this month.

“I always discuss my batting with my childhood coach, Praveen Amre. It won’t be any different this time also. Obviously, the preparations for each series is slightly different. But, obviously, you never reveal your strategy before the series starts. The key is to always remain three steps ahead of the opposition,” the 27-year-old Mumbaikar said.

Talking about the New Zealand attack, he said: “It’s a decent attack. They have Trent Boult, also good spinners like Mitch Santner and Ish Sodhi. We can’t let our guard down.”

Asked about using bats with different weight, he said he always uses bats of the same weight.

“Whether it’s Melbourne or Mumbai, I have never tinkered with the weight of my bats. It’s always been same, irrespective of bounce in various pitches across the globe.”

He scored 243 runs, including a century and a half century, in the recently-concluded series against the West Indies.

“I always strive to improve and I am satisfied with my performance in the Caribbean. I had prepared specially to face the Dukes red ball.

“It is different to play red Dukes than kookaburra as the ball seams and swings more than other balls. For that you need to play close to the body and as late as possible. That was my endeavour and I was happy with my execution. It would have been great had we won 3-0 but you can’t control weather,” said Rahane.

Asked for his views on chief coach Anil Kumble, he replied: “He has been phenomenal with his inputs. He has left international cricket for nearly eight years but nothing seems to have changed. His passion is unmatched. He has an eye for every minute detail. He told me that I am doing well and the key to consistency is focussing on routines.”

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