Ajinkya Rahane, who is currently serving as the understudy captain of the Indian cricket team, has become the first player to receive the honorary Mullagh Medal after emerging as the Player of the Match in the Boxing Day Test between India and Australia.
Rahane was chosen as the Player of the Match for his spectacular knock in the first innings of India, during which he smashed a fantastic 112 runs which helped India take a 131-run lead and played an instrumental role in their victory. The visitors won the second Test by an impressive margin of 8 wickets.
Mullagh Medal is an honour that Cricket Australia gives to the captain of the winning team touring Australia. The award has been named after the illustrious Victorian player Johnny Mullagh, who had led the Aboriginal team of Australia in 1868 that toured England for the first time.
Cricket Australia has declared that they will handover the award to the Player of the Match of the second Test between the two teams.
With the victory in the second match, India has now evened out the series with the hosts with 1-1.
Rahane’s tactical captaincy proved that all that is needed is a little change in strategy, according to the circumstances, for a team to spring back from its lowest. The second Test has proved Rahane’s mettle as a leader as he now has a hundred per cent winning rate as a Test captain. There is no doubt about the fact that no one else deserved this honour more than Rahane.
The two teams will next lock horns in the third Test of the four-match series that will commence on January 7 in Sydney.
Rahane has displayed a perfect example of finding opportunity in adversity. He gave a strong reminder through this match that even if they are carrying the scars left by the loss of the last Test, while also becoming the lowest scorers in Test cricket, India is a tough team. Having their captain and the strongest batsman unavailable, two of their strongest bowlers out due to injury, and bearing the burden of their previous loss, nothing kept them from achieving victory.