Southampton [UK], June 16 (ANI): India Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane on Wednesday said that he would look to play his natural game in the upcoming World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand.
India and New Zealand will lock horns in the World Test Championship (WTC) final, beginning June 18.
"I will be playing my natural game. Winning is really important whether I score a hundred or not. I don't want to put too much pressure on myself and even if my 30 or 40 is valuable for the team, I am happy. I am happy to take criticism. I feel it's because of the criticism I'm here. I always want to give my best whether people criticise me or not," said Rahane during a virtual press conference.
"'For me, it's important to give my best for my country and contribute each and every time be it as a batsman or a fielder," he added.
Talking about what he has advised the youngsters in the team, Rahane said: "'It's just a mental thing. If we can switch mentally and adapt, it's important. Yes one-off, we have to take it as another game, not as a final or anything. We just want to give our best, play good cricket, be consistent in the five days."
"Personally, I am not telling them anything. They know their game-plan. It's about giving them freedom, backing them, believing in their abilities. We don't want any kind of confusion," he added.
When asked about his response to his critics, Rahane said: "I don't really think about criticism. If people criticise me, that's their thing, and that's their job. I cannot control all these things. For me, I always focus on controllables, putting my best foot forward, working hard, and following my process and the result follows."
"I like to be in the present. I know the conditions. It's about being in the moment, adjusting to the conditions. Also, me being the highest scorer doesn't matter now. It's past. I just don't want to put extra pressure and would want to play freely," he added.
Mohammed Siraj has been included in India's 15-member squad for the upcoming World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand, starting on Friday.
Mayank Agarwal has been left out and this means Shubman Gill and Rohit Sharma will be opening the batting for the Virat Kohli-led side. Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja have been chosen as the spinners, while Wriddhiman Saha has also been named in the squad along with Rishabh Pant.
India squad for WTC final: Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (c), Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant, Wriddhiman Saha, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Mohammad Shami, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj. (ANI)