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“They Probably Have Just The Next Innings To Save Their Test Careers” – Sunil Gavaskar On Rahane, Pujara

Ajinkya Rahane India
(Credit: Getty Images)

Batting legend Sunil Gavaskar has come down hard on India’s struggling duo Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane, who has been due for runs for quite some time now. Pujara managed only three runs while Rahane was out on the first ball duck in the 2nd Test against South Africa at the Wanderers in Johannesburg.

Opting to bat first, Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul gave India a solid start before Marco Jansen dismissed Mayank. Pujara looked confident in the start but was dismissed when Olivier bowled a short-of-length delivery outside the off stump, which caught the shoulder of Pujara’s bat. The ball lobbed in the air and Temba Bavuma completed an easy catch at point. It looked like a lethargic attempt from a batsman who is low on confidence.

On the very next delivery, Ajinkya Rahane’s tentative push outside the off-stump was caught in the third slip by Keegan Petersen. With Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara’s future hanging by the wire, Sunil Gavaskar the second innings in this match could be their last chance to show they deserve to play ahead of in-form players like Shreyas Iyer.

“After those two dismissals one can say that they probably have just the next innings, both Pujara and Rahane, to save their Test careers,” Gavaskar said while commentation on Star Sports.

“There have been questions asked about their place in the team and now with these two dismissals, they have just one innings left. If there is another innings and the way India is going, it looks like there will be another for them to score something and maybe keep their place in the team,” Sunil Gavaskar further added.

Cheteshwar Pujara has not scored a Test century since January 2019, while Ajinkya Rahane’s form has been poor to say the least over the past year or so.

India lose the plot after a good start

KL Rahul
(Credit: Getty Images)

The visitors, who lost Virat Kohli on the eve of the Wanderers Test, opted to bat first after winning the toss. Stand-in captain KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal gave India a good start before South Africa bounced back with three wickets before the lunch.

Rahul and Hanuma Vihari, who replaced Kohli in the playing XI, looked in complete control of the proceedings, adding 42 runs for the fourth wicket. However, India once again lost a couple of wickets in a cluster to reel at 116/5.

Since then, Ravichandran Ashwin and Rishabh Pant have shown positive intent to help India cross the 150-run mark. They will look to continue the same momentum and stretch India’s first innings total as much as possible.

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