Irrespective of his past achievements, Ajinkya Rahane hasn’t been at his best for quite a while now. Over the last few months, several cricket pundits and experts have called for his exclusion from the Indian team. As a matter of fact, he was removed as the Test vice-captain just before the ongoing three-match Test series as well. Thus, can the third Test at Newlands Test prove to be his final appearance for the Asian side? Today, we shall be taking a look at 3 reasons why Cape Town Test can be Ajinkya Rahane’s last.
1) Inconsistent returns in the recent past:
As harsh as it may sound, the 33-year-old has been woefully out of form for the last 12-15 months. While his last hundred came more than a year ago, he has scored just four fifties in his last 15 Tests. Another issue he has been facing is the inability to convert starts into big scores. Rahane’s lack of temperament has been clearly noticeable in the ongoing three-match Test series against South Africa as well.
2) Constant failures on away soil:
At one point in time, the Mumbai batter had one of the best away records for an Indian. However, post 2018, he has been far from impressive during several overseas tours. As a senior player, one would expect a sense of responsibility in away tours but alas, Rahane has played many irresponsible knocks during crunch situations. He was awfully poor in the away Test series against England last year too
3) Current form of Hanuma Vihari and Shreyas Iyer:
One of the major reasons why the Cape Town Test culd be the last for Rahane is due to the current form of Hanuma Vihari and Shreyas Iyer. As both of them are competing for the number 5 spot in red-ball cricket, the heat is on India’s former vice-captain. The Andhra Pradesh batter was impressive during the India A tour to the rainbow nation. Besides, he batted well during the Johannesburg Test as well. Last but not the least, Iyer scored a hundred on his debut against New Zealand in Kanpur, and hasn’t done anything wrong to be dropped from the side.