Galle: Pleased with his world record feat of eight catches in a Test match, Ajinkya Rahane today credited former India skipper Rahul Dravid for guiding him on slip catching and overall fielding.
Rahane today became the first fielder in Test history to take eight catches in a game, achieving the feat in the ongoing first cricket match against Sri Lanka here.
“We had a very good talk during IPL about what he used to do when he used to stand in the slips,” revealed Rahane on working closely with Dravid, who used to man the slip cordon for India during his playing days.
“He (Dravid) told me that focus and concentration were really important things. In Tests sometimes the ball will not come for a long time and suddenly you have to grab that one chance that comes. That temperament has to be there and I have been working on my slip catching and my overall fielding,” he said at the post match press conference here.
Rahane said he wasn’t aware of his world record feat until his teammates told him about it.
“I didn’t know until Murali Vijay and Umesh Yadav came on during a break, and told me that this is a world record for you,” said a happy Rahane.
“I was quite surprised, I didn’t know about it. I feel in this team, any player can stand anywhere. Every individual has the ability to stand anywhere and all are brilliant fielders. So I normally stand at gully for fast bowlers and this time Virat Kohli told me that I will stand at slip for spinners. So I have been practicing that before the Test series. Even during the series we have been taking 50 to 100 catches everyday. So that’s working for us,” he added.
Rahane said his sole intention was to stay completely focussed while fielding in the slips.
“I was completely focusing at the present moment because we all knew that one wicket at that point would give us that momentum. (Kumar) Sangakkara’s wicket gave us the momentum and immediately (Angelo) Mathews got out, so my motto was to stay focussed all the time in the slips because the ball was turning that time.
“Ashwin and Bhajji pa (Harbhajan Singh) were bowling really well. I just wanted to focus and keep concentrating and each and every ball.”