K.L Rahul promises “aggressive cricket” from India ahead of Tests against Bangladesh

From Wednesday, India will be back in red-ball cricket when they face Bangladesh in the first of two Tests at Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in the hope to grab much-needed ICC World Test Championship points and boost their chances of reaching the final in June next year.

The two Tests between India and Bangladesh are a part of the ICC World Test Championship cycle, where India are currently placed fourth with 52.08 percentage points. With them needing to win Tests against Bangladesh and Australia, stand-in captain K.L Rahul has promised that India will play aggressive cricket in the upcoming series against the Shakib Al Hasan-led side.

“There is a World Test championship (final) qualification so we will also have to be aggressive as well. We know where we stand and what we need to do to qualify for the final. Each day, each session we will have to assess what is required for the team in that particular moment and try to give our best and enjoy each day of Test cricket.”

“We won’t go in with any set mindset. There is a history of a certain venue. You look at the numbers and you take certain pointers from that. At least for us we will go there and try to be aggressive and brave, try and get a result.”

“The game is played over five days so it is important to break it down into smaller targets and assess how the game goes. In every session, the demands would be different but one thing is sure that you are going to see a lot of aggressive cricket from our side,” said Rahul in a pre-series press conference.

Of late, the Test cricket world has been enchanted by the aggressive cricket played by England and admirably led by Ben Stokes, with their theory made more strong by the 26-run win over Pakistan in Multan on Monday. Rahul admitted to enjoying watching the Test action in Pakistan.

“To watch these two matches between England and Pakistan has really been very exciting. I am really enjoying watching Test cricket being played like that, a very fearless, aggressive, taking the game on.”

At the same time, Rahul remarked that every team can’t adopt the style of England in Tests. “That’s worked for them. Each team has its own way. Obviously, all teams can learn a thing or two from teams that are doing well and how they’ve really performed. It’s not always going to be the same approach. You turn up and (play) according to the conditions and where you are.”

Rahul refused to categorise England’s way of playing Test cricket as reckless. “It’s how you view it. For me as a cricketer, it’s not reckless cricket. They have a certain mindset and they’ve thought about it. They back their players and they are doing the job for their team. Whatever suits that team, it’s working for them.”

“Cricket is changing and evolving, there is no set way of how this game needs to be played. It’s up to the players now to assess what is the best they can do for the team. When you’re doing that it doesn’t really matter how you’ve done it.”

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