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Updated February 1st, 2024 at 15:26 IST

'I had not spoken a lot with Rohit': Late bloomer Rajat Patidar on his equation with Rohit Sharma

Expected to make his India debut against England in the second Test here, prolific middle-order batter Rajat Patidar says he prides himself in being a good learner and has been trying to upgrade his skills by observing the iconic Virat Kohli.

Rajat Patidar
Rajat Patidar | Image:BCCI
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Expected to make his India debut against England in the second Test here, prolific middle-order batter Rajat Patidar says he prides himself in being a good learner and has been trying to upgrade his skills by observing the iconic Virat Kohli.

The injury-forced absence of KL Rahul and Ravindra Jadeja is set to finally open a window of opportunity for the 30-year-old, who has scored tons of runs for Madhya Pradesh in the domestic circuit.

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"I always observe his (Kohli) batting from back of the nets, especially his footwork and body movement while batting. I try to learn and add these things into my batting," Patidar told BCCI.TV referring to the time spent with Kohli in their IPL team Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Kohli has opted out of the first two Tests owing to personal reasons.

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"It is not easy but I am relentlessly after it," Patidar said about his pursuit of excellence.

The right-hander from Indore also revealed that sharing the dressing room with chief coach Rahul Dravid and skipper Rohit Sharma in the ongoing five-match series has also benefited him immensely.

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"I have played with many Indian players in the domestic circuit. I have been interacting with Rahul sir since the last two series.

"I had not spoken a lot with Rohit bhai but I got to speak with him on this tour about batting. He shared his experiences in the nets, all this has increased my confidence," Patidar said.

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The late bloomer said he won't curb his attacking style if he gets to make his Test debut on Friday.

"I have an aggressive batting style and I started playing shots since the beginning of my domestic career. It is in my habit and it's all about preparation. I have prepared myself that way, so it has become a habit now," he said "I study the pattern of opponent bowlers, their field placements. I observe how Rohit bhai makes his field placements. I try to add-on these learnings into my game," he explained.

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It has not been smooth sailing for Patidar, who endured his fair share of injury setbacks.

The batter underwent a successful surgery to repair an Achilles heel injury that ruled him out of the last IPL.

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"It is always difficult for a player when he gets injured. That time, I told myself I cannot change the time I will need to recover from the injury. I accepted this fact and worked in the present moment with a lot of focus," Patidar said.

"To make a comeback after injury, getting my first Test call-up has been the happiest moment for me. It was my dream to represent my country in Test cricket." India are trailing the five-match Test series against England 0-1 after losing the opener by 28 runs in Hyderabad. 

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Published February 1st, 2024 at 15:26 IST

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