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Virat Kohli-Ajinkya Rahane the new Sachin Tendulkar-Rahul Dravid of Indian cricket?

India Today logo India Today 11-10-2016

Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane rescued India from dire straits with a record partnership in the ongoing third and final Test in Indore. The captain and his deputy joined forces when India were struggling at 100/3 and added 365 runs -- India's highest-ever partnership for the fourth wicket -- to help the home team put on board a massive 557/5 declared.

The duo broke Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman's 353-run stand vs Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground in 2003-04 series.

Kohli and Rahane batted with equal amount of patience and aggression during their marathon partnership, which also saw the skipper notching up his second double hundred. It was also the pair's third century-plus stand in Test cricket.

Kohli scored his highest-ever 211 while Rahane struck a career-best 188.

Kohli and Rahane's composure on the pitch brought back memories of Tendulkar-Rahul Dravid partnership. After all, the retired legends hold the record for most century-plus stands to their names. The duo -- Dravid at No.3 and Tendulkar at No.4 -- was involved in 20 such partnerships, a record which will certainly stay for some years now.

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KOHLI'S RETURN TO FORM

Kohli had struggled to score big since his maiden double hundred against West Indies in Antigua in July. His barren run lasted seven innings which included the scores of 44, 3, 4, 9, 18, 9, 45 at 18.85, before the captain came to own to smash his highest score.

Kohli also took a leaf out of Tendulkar's knock of 241 against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground in 2004. Tendulkar avoided playing cover drives in that knock until he reached the double hundred.

Kohli did something similar and abstained himself from playing sweep and pull shots in his entire knock.

INDIA'S MR DEPENDABLE

Rahane was no less Dravidesque during his innings. New Zealand had a plan against Rahane and tested the Mumbaikar with a barrage of bouncers. However, that did not break Rahane who maintained his composure and dealt every delivery on its merit.

Rahane is no less than his idol. Dravid holds a unique record for scoring centuries in all Test playing nations, something Tendulkar couldn't do.

Rahane has so far scored centuries against South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and West Indies. India have not played Test series against Pakistan and Zimbabwe for a long time now.

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