Support from all quarters motivating: Rahane
Jaipur: The lone century-maker in this edition of the Indian Premier League, Ajinkya Rahane says the support from all quarters is motivating him to raise the bar with each outing.
Former greats like Sunil Gavaskar have been heaping praise on the youngster, with some even labelling him as a replacement for the recently-retired Rahul Dravid.
Rahane, who is the currently the `Orange Cap` holder, is aware of the adulation and wants to continue with the job.
"I don`t feel it is adding up pressure but I feel it is rather a motivation for me. I want to continue in same fashion. It is also a challenge for me and it inspires me to try more and keep my performance level.
"I add value to my cricket. I hail from a middle class family and I am thankful for what cricket has given me. I want to remain as humble as I have been. I am also thankful to Rajasthan Royals who has given me the opportunity to perform," Rahane said.
Like any aspiring cricketer, Rahane`s dream is represent India in Test cricket.
"I don`t think about the things which are not in my control but playing for the country is dream of every cricketer and I also want to represent India in Tests.
"I am not thinking about it because it is selectors` job. My job is to perform."
Talking about the astonishing six that he hit against Muttiah Muralitharan in the match against Royal Challengers Bangalore, the youngster said it very satisfying.
"Murli is a great bowler and I was playing him for the first time. The six I hit off him has given me more confidence and satisfaction. As far as the playing inside out is concerned it is the think-tank of the team which prepares the strategy and suggests possible target areas for batsmen.
"It is up to us to work it out. Some time it works and some time it doesn`t. I am sticking mostly to cricketing shots and till they are producing runs I need not attempt anything else."
About batting with Dravid and his own technique, Rahane said that the former has been a calming influence.
"Rahul Dravid has been my role model and batting with him takes away the pressure away. He is so calm and keeps the things simple. He has been inspiration for me.
"As far as the technique is concerned if you have the basics right you can quickly adjust to all three formats in the sport. It is the self belief which also has helped me."
Recollecting the tips he received from Sachin Tendulkar, Rahane said that the senior batsman often communicates to him the flaws in his batting.
"It was during a Ranji Trophy final a couple of years back that he gave a few suggestions about my technique and that did help.
"Whenever he finds some flaw he communicates to me. I try and stick to the basics and try to play on merit. Even when I had hit six boundaries in a row I was just playing the ball on merit," said Rahane who plays for Mumbai in the Ranji Trophy.
Ruling out any rest, Rahane said that it was crucial for him to play continuously.
"No I am not thinking of any rest or change of gear in batting style as it is crucial for me play on trot. I wish to give my hundred per cent in every match.
"We are also not thinking about winning the IPL-V. We have done well so far and wish to continue play and work out on our strengths."