Flexible Rahane eyes consistency in ODIs

Mohali [India], Oct.23 : Ajinkya Rahane, who is opening the batting for India in the ongoing ODI series against New Zealand, has insisted that although he has been batting with rhythm at the moment, he is looking for more consistency in his performances.

Talking about his role as the opener, Rahane expressed that he wants to build a foundation for the team and turn out to be a match-winner for them.

"I think I can be more consistent. I am batting well. I have been getting starts and batting with rhythm. I think it is a matter of just one good inning and I believe that inning is not too far away. I have belief in my abilities. I have batted well in the last 2-3 series and scored runs. Now that I am batting as an opener, my role is to build a foundation for the team and build a partnership.

If I am opening, I would like to be a match-winner going forward," the 28-year-old was quoted as saying by bcci.tv.

When asked about his shift in batting line-up from No.5 spot in Tests to the top of the order in ODIs, Ajinkya said that he believes in making adjustment as per the different situations.

"At the highest level, you need to make that mental adjustment. I bat in the middle-order in the Tests and ODIs too, but now I am opening and what is important when doing it, is your mindset," said Rahane, who opened the batting on 39 occasions in occasions in ODIs and batted at No.

4 in 20 matches. "You need to realize what the priority is at that moment. I don't think too far ahead. I try to focus on what the situation is at present. Now, my focus is to play the role of an opener to the best of my ability and help the team. As an individual, my goal is to see how much I can contribute to the team and how consistently I can do it," he insisted.

Recently, fielding coach Ramakrishnan Sridhar described Rahane as a `multi-specialist fielder` despite the latter being the slip fielder.

Reflecting on the same, the 28-year-old insisted that when he fields in ODI, he tries to concentrate both in the circle as well as at the boundary.

"I have enjoyed fielding at different positions right from my club cricket days. When you are fielding, what is important is anticipation. When I stand in slips, I need to manage my ability to concentrate for long hours. In ODIs, you need to be in the circle and even at the boundary," said Rahane, who scored 33 and 28 runs in the opening two ODIs of the five-match series against the Kane Williamson-led side.

Rahane holds the record for most catches (eight) in a Test match but when it comes to white ball, he stands in slips, inside the 30-yard-circle and patrols the boundary in death overs.

Source: ANI