Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma © bcci.tv

India’s Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane admitted that it is “hard” to see Rohit Sharma sitting outside in Tests. However, Rohit Sharma is all set to open for India in the longer format of the game.

Rahane was back in form during the West Indies series and cemented the place in the middle-order with a century. He shared his happiness that the team management thought to try out Rohit Sharma in the opening. Rohit Sharma has three centuries in 27 Tests at an average of under 40.

“I don’t know yet whether Rohit will open the innings. If he does, I will be happy for him. I said in West Indies also, it is hard to see a special talent like Rohit sitting out,” Rahane said. “He has worked so hard and if he gets an opportunity, I am sure, he will do well,” Rahane exuded confidence.”

Ajinkya Rahane

Rahane further praised Rohit Sharma, referring to him as a “special talent”. He even highlighted the difference between ODI and Test cricket.

“Test cricket is all about mindset and ODI cricket, you can just go out there and back yourself. In Test cricket, sometimes if two bowlers are bowling good spells, you need to respect that and come out strong and play your game after that,” he said.

For him, one of the bigger challenges is to get more matches to play when someone is considered for only one international format. For this, “match practice” is important, thinks Rahane. He even praised the bowlers as well, who usually don’t deliver loose balls. He further shared that someone needs to believe in themselves so that they could “come out strongly”.

“You need to practice really hard. Your practice sessions should be really hard so that when you step into play a match, it gets easy for you. Preparation and process is the key. If I can keep my mind at the present — that is Test cricket — other things will fall automatically,” shared Rahane, who has played 58 Tests and 90 ODIs so far.

Ajinkya Rahane is also an option for the Indian team

However, he didn’t leave the hope of playing at the 50-over format. He last donned the blue jersey 18 months ago. Right now, his only focus is the South Africa series.

“Apart from Tests, I really enjoy playing ODI cricket as well. I want to come back to ODIs. Right now, the focus is completely on this series,” he concluded.