India aim to dominate West Indies: Rahane
Port of Spain (Trinidad): India’s batsman Ajinkya Rahane said that the visitors’ aim will be to play attacking cricket and dominate hosts West Indies in the fourth and final Test match starting here on Thursday.
India registered a 237-run win in the third Test and took an unassailable 2-0 lead in the four-match series, after winning the first Test by an innings and 92 runs, with the second ending in a draw.
A big margin win against the hosts will ensure the Virat Kohli-led side a place in the top of the International Cricket Council (ICC) Test rankings replacing Australia.
“Mood has been fantastic in the dressing room. Our goal is to play attacking cricket and dominate West Indies here. We have been playing good cricket and it is important to finish well on this tour. A 3-0 win will be very good and our long term goal is to be the No.1 Test team. But it is important to stay in the present moment,” Rahane told reporters ahead of the fourth Test starting here on Thursday.
“As Virat Kohli said earlier, we want to express ourselves in the middle. That means we want to dominate here again like we did in the first three Tests. We have dominated every single day in this series and dominated every single Test so far. So it is important to be in that process regularly and think about achieving that No 1 Test status as a team.”
The 28-year-old also expressed confidence in his team’s bowlers, who have managed to pick 20 wickets twice in the two wins.
“We think that West Indies is a pretty dangerous team at home. We played some good cricket so far and have improved ourselves,” he said.
“Our bowling unit has been performing really well from the Sri Lanka tour and in India against South Africa as well.”
With the team’s batting clicking in the previous three matches, the Anil Kumble-coached side is unlikely to make big changes in the line-up.
With opener Murali Vijay fit after a thumb injury, one can expect Shikhar Dhawan to be dropped for the final match and Vijay being given a chance. Dhawan has hardly scored much except his 84 in the first match.
But with Lokesh Rahul in good form, scoring a century and a 50 in two Tests, Kohli might stick to the right-handed batsman for the final match. Besides Rahul, Rahane would also hold his place after handy knocks.
Speaking about his approach to every game and innings, the Mumbai batsman said, “I do visualisation a day before the game, and also in the dressing room before I go into bat. I always try and visualise myself in different situations. And actually that is helping me in the middle to bat at number five. It is important to assess the conditions once you go in and play according to that.
“Of course, what you are thinking may not happen in the field of play. But what you visualise, most of the times those things happen. I speak with our coaches, Sanjay Bangar and Anil Kumble, so I think that communication and visualisation is really helping me,” the right-handed batsman added.