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IPL or any other sport, could be played without spectators: Ajinkya Rahane

New Delhi: The entire world may have come to a stand-still due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but Delhi Capitals batsman Ajinkya Rahane believes that the only way forward is to be pragmatic in our approach. Speaking on an Instagram live session with the franchise’s official handle on Wednesday, the stylish Indian batsman said he would also be keen to play in empty stadiums if it means the health and well-being of the fans are protected.

“COVID-19 pandemic has taught everyone that unexpected things can happen, therefore we need to be happy about what we are doing, and should value what we have. It is also important that we maintain positivity and patience in our daily lives, and I believe it will certainly help us in finding a way forward,” said Rahane.

“As for IPL or any other sport, I feel it could be played without spectators. All of us have played domestic cricket in almost empty stadiums, so that’s an experience all cricketers are used to. Of course we are nothing without our fans, and that’s why their safety is of utmost importance. Even if they get to watch some live action from home, I am sure that will be an enjoyable experience as well. The safety of fans is key, and if we need to play in empty stadiums for that, we are open to do it,” he added.

Speaking on how he has been spending time during the nationwide lockdown, Rahane said he is enjoying bonding with his wife and daughter. “I’m trying to be as positive as possible during this lockdown, and staying at home with my wife and daughter. It’s given me an opportunity to bond with them, and I’m also able to help my wife in cooking and cleaning. Apart from this, I’m also trying to revive my karate skills, something that I pursued as a child. It definitely helps me in maintaining my agility and fitness, and I am enjoying it a lot,” said the 31-year-old.

Used to try to copy Ricky sir’s batting & fielding style: Rahane

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Ajinkya Rahane was bought by Delhi Capitals last year before the IPL Auction, and speaking on an Instagram live session with the franchise’s official handle on Wednesday, the middle-order batsman said he is really excited about playing for the Delhi-based franchise.

“I’m really excited and looking forward to playing for the Delhi Capitals. It is something I’ve really been eager about, and it has stemmed in because of the things I’ve heard about the team from the likes of Ishant Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Shreyas Iyer. They’ve told me that it’s like a huge family where everyone is always backing each other, and enjoying each other’s successes,” said Ajinkya Rahane.

Talking about his excitement on playing under head coach Ricky Ponting, Rahane said he has always admired the Australian legend. “My idols growing up were definitely Rahul (Dravid) sir and Sachin (Tendulkar) sir, but I’ve always admired Ricky sir also. I used to try to copy his batting and fielding styles. And therefore, I’m really looking forward to working under him. I’m sure he will help me immensely in my batting as well as overall leadership,” said the former captain of the Rajasthan franchise.

Signing off, Rahane also sent a message to Delhi’s fans, “All of you should know that I am also waiting eagerly for the IPL season as much as you guys. However, we’re going through a tough time, and it is important for all of us to follow the guidelines given to us. It is a good opportunity for us to help our country by staying united. We will meet soon whenever the IPL happens, till then please take care of yourselves and your loved ones.”

(IANS)

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