Former chief selector MSK Prasad has heaped praise on Ajinkya Rahane's leadership qualities while justifying the management decision of making him the Test vice-captain.
Rahane, India's leading run-scorer in the World Test Championship, has had an erratic phase with the willow. The Mumbai batsman may have got 1095 runs including three tons in the WTC cycle, but he's also registered four single-digit scores since his valiant hundred in Melbourne.
In an exclusive interaction with India TV, MSK Prasad labelled Rahane as a 'team-man' and underlined his conduct in Australia when regular skipper Virat Kohli was away on paternity leave.
Rahane led India in three Tests earlier this year where they plunged Australia in their own backyard to retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
"Rahane has got that temperament which is needed in captaincy. When we pick a team and choose a vice-captain, we don't expect to drop that particular player. Rahane is a complete team-man with a wonderful temperament, especially in Test format.
"Rahane led the side in Kohli's absence and proved his leadership ability. It's not easy to lead in Test cricket and keep everyone motivated. He's got patience too. We gave him vice-captaincy because we wanted someone who can lead the side in the skipper's absence," said Prasad.
Prasad, also a former India player, mentioned that the Test set-up didn't have any youngster who was ready for vice-captaincy. He further picked Shubman Gill to be made Kohli's deputy if the team management wants to groom someone for the future.
"When Rahane became the vice-captain, there was no youngster in the side who was ready for the role. At present, someone like Shubman Gill can be made Kohli's deputy if the management wants to groom him for the future. The grooming process starts from India A captaincy. Hanuma Vihari also led India A side for a couple of years," he said.