Dear Ajinkya Rahane,
It has been quite a while since the Indian fans talked about you. It has been a while since people exposed their faith in the diminutive magician who would brave the treacherous Australian bowling mafia back in their den with a smile on his face.
It has been a while since you led India to glory with very limited resources and that too breaching the sacred land of Gabba, tarnishing it with your might and fury that was never seen. It has been a while since Mitchell Starc faced someone daunting enough in a Test match who would flick him with derision.
And yet here you are. Here you are, being the man, the myth, the legend, the one embracing the challenge head on and darting into a world full of uncertainties with a smile on your face. When your team-members were busy scrambling for shelter in front of an all-firing pace quartet of Australia, you would face them like a shield forged by Hephaestus himself, showing no chinks, no signs of rust, no signs of relent, and battling the bullets and cannonball alike without breaking a sweat.
It has been a while, Ajinkya Rahane since we saw you dazzling the 22 yards.
It has been a while since India found their stride in the center, battling out with all their glory, particularly in the middle-order, it has been a while, since an Indian batter would fight head on against the mighty Aussies in a WTC final and yet here you are, silently baring your chin, baring your heart and most importantly, defying the invincible Aussies.
Maybe we would go onto lose this fixture. It pains no longer. It hurts no more. For India has developed a habit now to show all their might throughout the tournament and then when the big games come knocking, they falter. But then I will smile because someone had the guts to say a no. Someone had the courage to push back the Aussies.
Someone had the spirit of waging a full-blown war against a high-performing Australian unit and yet he was ostracized from the team a year ago because his numbers would jettison him in the midst of the Pacific ocean.
Thank you Jinks, thank you for everything.
A crazy cricket fan