India’s vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane on Monday said the upcoming Test match rubber against England will be a test of mind and character, adding that making quick adjustments according to the demands will be key.
Ahead of the opening Test starting in Birmingham on Wednesday, he also said that as per the skill-set, both teams are at par.
“It is a test of mind and character. Communication in these conditions crucial. We will have to respect the conditions,” Rahane told reporters.
“Our mindset is to how quickly you adjustment rather than thinking about the skill-set. Skill-wise both teams are at par. It is all about how quickly you handle the situations,” he added.
Rahane said the team is not thinking about the results as it can only put the players under pressure. He also mentioned that the patience is the key to success while playing England.
“We were here in 2014 and we know what it takes to play good cricket here in England. Thinking about results put pressure on yourself,” Rahane said.
“Patience is key because it depends on the weather. If it is sunny, good to bat. If it gets cloudy, good for bowlers. As a batting unit, it is important to challenge yourself, backing your game. If you are set, you need to hold back and need to make it count,” he added.
Asked about the conditions in England and the pace bowlers Rahane said: “We have experienced pace bowlers like Mohammad Shami, Umesh Yadav. They played here in 2014 as well. Our bowling attack took 20 wickets in each Tests in South Africa. So, we have an attack which actually can destruct the opponents. The main challenge is to bowl in right areas for the long period of time,” Rahane said.
India only played one warm-up game, and that too was cut short by a day. Commenting on the preparations, the right-hand batsman said: “We have had decent practice sessions and enough net sessions. We are taking one Test at a time and really looking forward to the series.”
Praising chinaman Kuldeep Yadav, Rahane said: “Kuldeep can be the X-factor for us, especially the way he bowled in T20Is and ODIs. At the moment I am not sure about the team combination and we will have to see what the wicket will be like.”
However, Rahane said that his selection in the team is not given. “We don’t have to forget (Ravichandran) Ashwin and (Ravindra) Jadeja — they have been doing well for us. Ashwin has been bowling well and contributes with the bat as well,” he reasoned.
Rahane was also confident that top-order batsmen Cheteshwar Pujara and Shikhar Dhawan — who have looked off-colour so far — will return to form as soon as possible.
“We are not worried about them. They are quality batsmen and we all back them. It just takes one innings (to hit form),” he said.