|Full name||Ajinkya Madhukar Rahane|
6 June 1988 |
Ashwi KD, Maharashtra, India
|Height||5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)|
|Bowling style||Right-arm medium|
|Test debut (cap 278)||22 March 2013 v Australia|
|Last Test||6 January 2015 v Australia|
|ODI debut (cap 191)||3 September 2011 v England|
|Last ODI||26 March 2015 v Australia|
|ODI shirt no.||27|
|T20I debut (cap 39)||31 August 2011 v England|
|Last T20I||7 September 2014 v England|
|T20I shirt no.||27|
|Domestic team information|
|Source: Cricinfo, 10 March 2015|
Ajinkya Madhukar Rahane (born 6 June 1988) is an Indian international cricketer representing Mumbai in domestic cricket. He is a right-handed batsman who made his international debut in a Twenty20 International against England at Manchester in August 2011 and made his Test debut against Australia in March 2013.
Rahane made his first-class debut in 2007–08 season and averaged an impressive 62.04 after 100 innings. Rahane scored over 1000 runs three times in his first five seasons. With batsman Shikhar Dhawan injuring his fingers, Rahane made his Test debut in the 2013 Border–Gavaskar Trophy. Rahane's first Test century came at Basin Reserve, Wellington in the last match of India tour of New Zealand, 2014. He later made a century at Lord's in July 2014 and a career best 147 against Australia at Melbourne in December 2014 (India tour of Australia, 2014–15). 
In Indian Premier League cricket, he currently plays for the Jaipur-based Rajasthan Royals. Despite being a huge success at the Indian first class level, Rahane's performance for Rajasthan Royals were instrumental in his rise to fame and call up to the national team.
Rahane was born on 6 June 1988 in Ashwi KD, Ahmednagar district to Madhukar Baburao Rahane and Sujata Rahane in a Maratha family. The family hails from the village of Chandanapuri, Tal-Sangamner. He has a younger brother and sister. When Rahane was seven, his father took him to a small coaching camp with a matting wicket in Dombivli, as they could not afford proper coaching. Since he was 17, Rahane took coaching from former India batsman Pravin Amre.
Rahane had performed well when India U-19 toured New Zealand in early 2007 with two hundreds. The tour boasted future international stars such as Virat Kohli, Kane Williamson, Ishant Sharma, Tim Southee, Trent Boult and Ravindra Jadeja. The scores in New Zealand impressed the selectors and they picked him for the Mohammad Nissar Trophy in Pakistan. He had no first-class experience prior to this match in Karachi.
Rahane made his first-class debut, at the age of 19, for Mumbai against Karachi Urban in the Mohammad Nissar Trophy in September 2007, at Karachi, when most of the first-choice Mumbai players were unavailable for various reasons. Opening the innings with Sahil Kukreja, he scored a century on debut 143 (207). They notched up an opening partnership of 247, as Kukreja scored 110. Rahane was subsequently picked for the Irani Trophy match against Rest of India.
He made his Ranji Trophy debut for his first-class side Mumbai in the 2007/2008 season. His wonderful Ranji season followed an impressive showing for West Zone in the 2007–08 Duleep Trophy, where he scored 172 against an England Lions attack comprising Graham Onions, Monty Panesar, Steve Kirby and Liam Plunkett.
Rahane, with 1089 runs in his second Ranji season (2008–09), was a crucial factor in Mumbai's 38th title win. He continued to impress in domestic cricket, scoring three hundreds each in the 2009–10 and 2010–11 seasons of the Ranji Trophy. His first-class top score of 265 not-out (batting at no. 3 for Mumbai) came against Hyderabad at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Uppal in 2009-10 season. As Rahane scored over 1000 runs thrice in his five seasons, a Test call-up became inevitable. In the 2011 Irani Trophy match against Rajasthan, Rahane scored 152 and that innings helped him get selected in India’s Test squad.
List A career
Rahane made his List A debut for Mumbai against Delhi in the Ranji One-day Trophy in March 2007, at Delhi. Scoring 61 runs on debut he was instrumental in 171 runs match winning opening partnership with former Indian opener Wasim Jaffer. Two centuries in the Emerging Players Tournament in Australia brought him a place in the India ODI squad for the tour of England in 2011.
Rahane progressed through the Mumbai ranks and has also been a part of the Indian U-19 team and the India A. Ajinkya Rahane has also turned out for India Blue and India Green in the NKP Salve Challenger Trophy.
International career (2011- present)
Rahahe was named in the Test squad to play the West Indies in November 2011. Rahane was carried in the squad for 16 months and in his presence, he saw seven players make their debuts. His performance in the limited-overs cricket (ODI and T20I) during that period was also not encouraging, as he averaged around 25 in both ODI and T20 cricket, and struggled for form in the series against Pakistan and England (January 2013).
Rahane finally made his debut in Test cricket on 22 March 2013 against Australia in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy at Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium, Delhi. According to the media, Rahane got this chance through "sheer luck". Shikhar Dhawan, who made a dazzling start to his career in the third Test at Mohali scoring 187 on debut, was the obvious choice for the Delhi Test until he suffered an injury to his knuckles on his left hand. Gautam Gambhir, who was picked as a replacement for Dhawan, was sidelined owing to jaundice. Rahane was handed his India Test cap by senior bowler Harbhajan Singh. It also brought an end to a lean patch for the 40-time Ranji Trophy champions Mumbai, who did not produce even a single Test player for India in since May 2007. But two single-digit scores in the game prompted many to question his ability to handle pressure and replicate his domestic success at the international level. 
Despite his failure in the debut match, Rahane was included in the playing eleven for the first match of India tour of South Africa (2013-14). Batting in the lower-middle order, he made 209 runs at an average of 69.66 in the series (including a 96 of 157 balls at Kingsmead, Durban) against the bowling attack comprising Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel and Vernon Philander. "For a man who had spent many a tour and series warming up the bench, carrying drinks, wondering when his opportunity will come, he has taken his chance with both hands, even though it arrived in the most difficult of conditions to bat in", cricket pundit Sidharth Monga wrote from Durban after the series. Rahane finished as India's third-highest run-getter in the series, but he was in the most precarious position of all before the series began.
Rahane made his first Test ton at Basin Reserve, Wellington, New Zealand on 15 February 2014 against New Zealand. India was in a difficult position when Rahane came to the crease at 156 for five and by the time he departed with 118 India were in a match-winning position ruined by Brendon McCullum’s famous triple century "He had a mountain of first-class runs backing him, of course, but did he have what goes around by the queer name of X-factor? Did he have that extra edge in his game and personality that separates top-class international players from the rest? Was he merely humble, or was he unable to assert himself, unable to absorb real pressure? After his first two Test tours to South Africa and New Zealand, we can safely conclude it must be the former. Underneath that seemingly soft exterior lurks a solid Test batsman, and he was on display at the Basin Reserve", ESPN Cricinfo wrote in their analysis.
Rahane played in the Investec Test Series (India tour of England, 2014) in England. His previous overseas performances (in away Tests, Rahane averaged 61.83 having scored 371 in four Tests including a century and two fifties) earned him a place in the playing eleven over Rohit Sharma. He justified his selection by making his second hundred at the second Test match at Lord's Cricket Ground. Put in to bat on a green-top wicket by Alastair Cook, India collapsed to 140 for six by tea, only to be rescued by Rahane's century. He was supported by Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who scored a valuable 36, besides putting on 90 runs for the eighth wicket. In the process, Rahane became the fourth Indian batsman to post a Test century on his first appearance at Lord’s, joining Sourav Ganguly, Dilip Vengsarkar and Ajit Agarkar
In the third Test of the 2014-15 Border-Gavaskar Trophy in Australia, Rahane made his third Test hundred. The opposition attack consisted of Mitchell Johnson and Ryan Harris, the core of a bowling unit that famously won Ashes in 2013-14.
Two centuries in the Emerging Players Tournament in Australia (2011) brought Rahane a place in the India limited-overs squad for the tour of England. He made his debut against England at Chester-le-Street as a replacement for opener Virender Sehwag. Although Rahane made 40 runs at strike-rate of 90.90, India's hopes of their first victory of the 2011 summer against England were thwarted by a washout at Chester-le-Street.
He did well in his maiden international series (2011 NatWest Series), against England in England, and in the return series. He made a 47 ball 54 on his second match of the latter tour. Rahane failed to impress in his next few limited over matches against West Indies, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and England.
Rahane made his second ODI fifty in 2013/14 Asia Cup, only to be followed by another slump.  In a short ODI career in the middle order, Rahane has seemed unsure and struggled at times to find the balance between defence and attack. He showed signs of comfort at the top of the order with rapid centuries against England (September 2014) and Sri Lanka (November 2014), but Rohit Sharma's second ODI double-century followed by a big hundred against Australia at the MCG pushed Rahane back to the middle order. In the ICC Cricket World Cup followed, Rahane only managed to score 208 runs from 8 matches, with an average of 34.66. 
Rahane made his international debut for India in a Twenty20 International against England at Old Trafford Cricket Ground, Manchester in August 2011. He scored a half-century on this match (61 of 49) against an England attack comprising Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann and Tim Bresnan. The match was the only T20I played by former Indian captain Rahul Dravid.
Rahane was part of Indian team make it to the final of 2014 World T20. After sitting on the bench for the first 3 matches he got a chance to play against Australia where he scored 19 runs. He gave India a good start in the semi final scoring 32 runs as India went on to win the Match.
Rahane was widely regarded as not being a Twenty20 player going into 2012 Indian Premier League, but had a superb season for Rajasthan Royals. Previously he was in the Mumbai Indians squads and got limited opportunities. And then, he caught the eye of Rajasthan Royals’ Shane Watson, who had watched him score an 80-ball hundred in a session in the second innings of a three-day game against Australia A in 2010. Having bought him from the Mumbai Indians, Rahul Dravid and Watson got Rahane to open the innings. “Opening the batting with Rahul bhai gave me a chance to express myself and showcase all that I had learnt over the years,” says Rahane.
|Ajinkya Rahane in IPL (2008 - 15)|
|MI and RR||79||2116||103*||33.58||119.41||1|
Rahane has had a successful stint with Rajasthan Royals so far, playing famously under Rahul Dravid's mentorship. Rahane rose to prominence in the Premier League world in 2012 season for Rajasthan Royals. He hit a match-winning 98 in his first game of IPL 2012 against Kings XI Punjab and followed that up with an unbeaten 103 against Royal Challengers Bangalore. His 84 off 63 balls against Delhi Daredevils was in vain though, as they lost by just one run. In Premier League 2012 Rahane became the first batsman to hit a century and emerged the leading run-scorer for Rajasthan Royals. He was retained by the Royals for the 2014 Premier League season.
Over the years, Rahul Dravid has been given a lot of credit for the way Rahane has matured as a player. Dravid, who captained the Royals before becoming team mentor, knows a thing or two about grabbing an opportunity with both hands. With Dravid guiding him, Rahane has transformed from a shy, longer format specialist into a player capable of batting at any position, in any format. Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar told NDTV, "What has been impressive about Rahane's career is the way he has made those little changes that have helped him to get better in every format of the game. This batsman is a thinking batsman, who keeps thinking about how to get better and that is why he is such a vital cog in the Rajasthan Royals team and a vital cog in the Indian cricket team."
Rahane plays in the lower middle-order batsman for the national team in Test and ODI cricket and as an opener in all forms of T20 cricket. He batted in the top three for Mumbai - started out as an opener and shifted down to No. 3 later. Rahane is widely praised for his batting technique, commitment and discipline to the game. He is sometimes described by the pundits as "one of the rising stars of Indian cricket".
|Ajinkya Rahane's Test centuries|
|1||118||5||New Zealand||Wellington, New Zealand||Basin Reserve||2014||Drawn|
|2||103||7||England||London, England, United Kingdom||Lord's Cricket Ground||2014||Won|
|3||147||13||Australia||Melbourne, Australia||Melbourne Cricket Ground||2014||Drawn|
One Day International centuries
|Ajinkya Rahane's One Day International centuries|
|1||106||33||England||Edgbaston, England, United Kingdom||Edgbaston Cricket Ground||2014||Won|
|2||111||38||Sri Lanka||Cuttack, India||Barabati Stadium||2014||Won|
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