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Prajakta Pawar in Delhi

Sorry couldn’t win the game: Rahane

RR opener speaks about disappointment of losing big finale, congratulates MI

His flair with the bat, his timing and elegance continue to impress. The slightly built Ajinkya Rahane milks bowlers, no matter how much of a threat they pose. Rajasthan Royals’ opener has consistently helped his side lay foundations and even chase down targets. He has the ability to anchor an innings just like his role model and mentor ‘The Wall,’ Rahul Dravid.

Instrumental in taking the Dravid-led side into the CLT20 2013 Final, Rahane amassed 288 runs at an average of 57.60 from six matches. On the grand stage at Feroz Shah Kotla against the Mumbai Indians, he scored 65 off 47 while chasing a mountainous total. Although he received the Golden Bat award for being the highest run scorer in the Karbonn Smart Champions League 2013, the heartbreaking loss in the final left the youngster a little saddened.

While speaking to clt20.com after receiving the trophy, he said that he would have been happier had his side won the game. When we asked him what Dravid said to him on winning the Golden Bat, he narrated the emotional conversation. “He (Dravid) said very well done and I very am proud of you.”

And, “I said to him, ‘Sorry, couldn’t win the game.’ But he said, ‘No worries. You win and lose in cricket, but as long as you give your 100 percent on the ground, that is important.”

Excerpts from Rahane’s brief interview:

What was the plan while going in to chase 203?

Obviously 203 was a challenging target, but while batting I wasn’t thinking too much about it. I was just trying to play ball-by-ball, over-by-over. I have been playing positively in this tournament and kept the same approach. But this time I was trying to bat with more responsibility and taking the challenge. I had Sanju Samson at the other end. The discussion we had was, we get one or two big shots and try and rotate the strike. Our plan was to play sensible cricket.

Your thoughts on receiving the Golden Bat award and the recognition that it brings

Obviously it feels good. I got the Golden Bat and it was a good tournament but obviously it would have felt better if we had won. I would have been happier because ultimately it is only when the team wins that the individual contributions feel good. So I am a bit disappointed that despite the contributions, we couldn’t win. At the same time I am proud of the Rajasthan Royals boys and the team management and the way they supported and have handled the team. The Mumbai Indians also played very well, so congratulations to them.

Talk to us about the valiant fight that the Rajasthan Royals put up

Like I have said before, our team effort and our team combination are so good that we don’t depend on any individual player. We came this far in the tournament due to the contributions of the whole team. So we had the same belief today that some one or the other will contribute and take the team across the line. But unfortunately it didn’t happen.

Share your thoughts on saying farewell to Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid in T20 cricket at the Kotla

I don’t have words. I am lucky that when both played their last T20 match, I played with them. I was playing with Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar was playing against us. I am lucky that I had the opportunity to play with them and was able to share the dressing room and ground with them. I have learnt a lot of cricketing aspects from them, so thanks to God that I got such a great opportunity. And we will definitely miss them.

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