Triple centurion Karun Nair wouldn't have played this Test match if Ajinkya Rahane was fit

Karun Nair became only the second Indian after Virender Sehwag to score a triple century in Tests. He reached his 100, double hundred and then triple hundred on the same day. Nair wouldn't have played this Test match if Ajinkya Rahane was fit, says a report in The Times Of India, adding that if skipper Virat Kohli persists with a five-bowler theory at home, there's no guaranteed spot for the Karnakata boy even after his triple ton.

Ahead of this Test match, Nair wasn't exactly on a high. He hadn't got a big score in his first two Tests and the pressure was on him to make use of this opportunity. If he had failed here, it would have been difficult for him to stake a claim in the near future. But Nair doesn't seem too bothered by all these - there was hardly a show of emotion after he had reached a rare landmark.

"There is always the shower for all that. And I have to score a few more centuries if I have to show emotion. And if you talk of pressure, it's there in every game. I got run out in the first game and didn't get many runs in the second, but I didn't feel the heat," Nair said, with the same nonchalance he shows while reverse sweeping spinners from the rough.

According to a report in the Indian Express, Karun wasn’t even part of the original squad for this Test series. He had only come in as a replacement for the injured K L Rahul for the third Test, where he made his debut. He had then retained his place thanks to a freak injury on the eve of the match to Ajinkya Rahane at Wankhede Stadium.

“But then, not playing a Test or scoring a 300 isn’t really a matter of life and death — if anything, the Nairs are glad that their son is still with them,” says The Indian Express report, adding that for, only five months ago, on July 17, Karun was on a snake boat that capsized in the Pampa river in Kerala during the ‘Valla Sadhya’ celebration at the Aranmula temple.

“Karun’s presence there had been organised by a few relatives to offer thanks for having made his international debut in Zimbabwe a month earlier. The boat was tipped over by the strong current while taking a turn, leaving the nearly-100 on board in the river. Karun had to swim a fair distance before he was rescued. A few didn’t survive. It was only when Karun reached safety did he even realise that among the dead were his relatives,” says the report.

“That incident left Karun very shaken and deeply affected. We always ensure not to bring it up in front of him and try to distract him with something else,” says a relative present with the family on Monday at the Chennai stadium.