Indian batting coach Vikram Rathour was pleased with the way India's batsmen went about their business on the second day of the World Test Championship final against New Zealand on Saturday (June 19). The likes of Shubman Gill, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane displayed tremendous patience but also didn't shy away from pouncing on every scoring opportunity.
There were quite a few rain interventions and only 64.4 overs were possible on day one in Southampton. Rohit and Gill put on eye-pleasing 62 runs for the opening wicket before India lost three wickets in the space of 26 runs. Kohli and Rahane then joined hands and have already added 58 runs for the fourth wicket. India were 146/3 at the end of the day's play, with Kohli and Rahane unbeaten on 44 and 29 respectively.
"It is important to spend some time, but for me batting is about scoring runs, so I think it's important that whenever you bat, you bat with intent. In these conditions, you have to have the discipline to score runs, and that's what we showed today. Rohit and Gill, both showed a lot of discipline, but at the same time, they showed a lot of intent. They were looking to score runs whenever they had an opportunity," said Rathour.
"We've had one-on-one discussions with all the batters, what kind of game plans they had, how they would like to approach this game and this tour, and you're right, a lot of discipline was shown today. If you get a loose ball, we need to make it count. There was some intent of looking to score runs whatever way we can, so pretty reasonable day we had, I think today."
Talking about Gill and Rohit's opening partnership, Rathour said: "I would give a lot of credit to Rohit and Gill because I think they started off really well. It was pretty challenging conditions when we started. It was a fresh wicket, we lost the toss, and it was overcast throughout the day.
"If they come good, they can take an attack away and really put pressure on the bowling side. They showed that today. Unfortunately, both of them got out after getting set, but one of the days I'm sure one of them is going to carry on, and that could be the day when we can have a really, really good start."
Rohit and Gill were slightly more aggressive with their approach, but once they got out, things slowed down a bit. Rathour feels India are still in a good position and anything over 250 would be a reasonable score in these conditions.
"I thought generally that's what can happen. Once the ball is a little older, I thought it started swinging a little more and they started hitting better areas, as well, as a bowling unit. So it got a little harder once we lost a couple of wickets because both those set batters were out, but then again in the last session, we could still see that the runs had started to come along.
"That's how this game will go, I think. It'll keep doing something throughout the day. We are looking to play sessions well, and if we can keep doing that, anything more than 250 plus would be a reasonable score under the conditions, I think, in these conditions."