Ajinkya Rahane, a replacement for Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag, both recuperating from injuries, is not sure how the national selectors will look at him once India's regular openers declare themselves fit.
“Look, both (Tendulkar and Sehwag) are very big players. I am thinking only about the remaining two matches and the Twenty20 international. I am hoping to do well for the team in all the three matches. That's all. The future is not in my hand,” he said.
There's plenty of buzz following his match-winning 91 in the third ODI at Mohali.
He has been Mumbai's prolific scorer in the BCCI tournaments, but the fans are hopeful that he would continue his good form against England on Sunday. “I am proud that I would be playing here and it's a big moment for me. I was a bit upset with the two shots I played at Hyderabad and Delhi.
“I told myself that I should not repeat the mistakes.
“Mahibhai and my coach said that I am such a talented player that I don't have to think about (the poor shots he played).
“They advised me to play my natural game and only that sort of approach will help me.''
Rahane also felt that it's good to be under mild pressure.
“We were chasing a big total at Mohali. A player is under pressure when playing for the country. I think some sort of pressure is always good because it brings the best out of you. So I decided to give myself some time, get set, assess the wicket and play my shots. I have played 48 first class and as many one-day games in the domestic tournament.
“ I also went to Australia for the Emerging Players tournament. This experience has given me the confidence. When you score runs overseas, your confidence levels go up.
“You get a natural motivation when playing for the country. Yes, playing in the domestic tournaments for four years has really been useful and advantageous,” he said.
Change in mindset
Leading 3-0 in the five-match series has changed the mindset of the team, but Rahane said the team would not bring down the intensity.
“There's a feel-good atmosphere in the dressing room. We are not looking ahead to beat England (5-0). The team's focus is on Saturday's match.
“We start from a scratch and looking for a good result. We played good cricket in England. But cricket is such a game where all your wishes will not be fulfilled all the time. Here in India we are enjoying each other's performance. It hurts when you lose 0-5, but we know the conditions at home, so we are taking full advantage of that.''