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Bouncers no bother for our batsmen: Rahane

Ajinkya Rahane insists India are capable of weathering a bouncer barrage this summer as he prepares to captain his country for the majority of their Test series against Australia.

Virat Kohli will fly home after the day-night Test for the birth of his first child, leaving Rahane to lead the side.

Rahane is also arguably the form batsman in the squad, having posted an unbeaten century in a tour game against an attack spearheaded by James Pattinson.

The 32-year-old dealt with plenty of short stuff during that three-day game in Sydney and knows more is to come in the coming weeks.

Rahane says he and India’s young batsmen will be able to handle anything sent down by Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood in the day-night Test.

“What I see and what I think is we play short balls really well. Last time when we came here, 2018, the wickets were really challenging,” Rahane said.

“The Perth wicket was really challenging but we adjusted to those wickets really well.

“As a batting unit we can adapt to any situation and any conditions.

“Every one of us plays short balls really well … I’m not too concerned about short balls, it’s all about having that positive mindset as a batsman.”

Rahane also talked up the tourists’ pace attack, which has been weakened by the absence of veteran Ishant Sharma.

“We do have a strong attack … they know how to bowl in these conditions,” he said.

The right-hander, who also served as stand-in skipper when India completed a Test series win over Australia at home in 2017, was reluctant to discuss his leadership style.

“I believe in staying in the moment,” he said.

“Right now, Virat is our captain … it’s about me giving my best in this Test and helping Virat out.

“After that, we’ll discuss our plan.”

Rahane admitted the pink ball would be a challenge in the day-night Test that begins on Thursday, noting that batting in the twilight period could be the key to victory.

“Playing Australia in Australia is always a challenge,” he said.

“They’re a very good team, we have to respect them.”

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