KL Rahul has excelled at the top of the order since the away Test series against England
Rahul is the top run-getter across both sides in the ongoing India versus South Africa Test series. His 204 runs have come at an excellent average of 51.00 and include a century and a half-century.
During an interaction on the Star Sports show Follow the Blues, Aakash Chopra reflected on the reason behind KL Rahul’s turnaround as a Test opener. He said:
“We can, of course, call this KL Rahul 2.0. The difference, in my opinion, is the mindset or the comfort that this is how I am going to play. It takes time because the players of this era, they play all three formats, it is very difficult to understand the right template for every format.”
The former India opener highlighted that KL Rahul has developed an excellent understanding of his off-stump. Chopra explained:
“There is a temptation to play the big shots because you can play those. But the KL Rahul we were seeing at this point, he has such a good idea about his off-stump, where to play the deliveries and how many deliveries to leave. He is happy to bide his time.”
Rahul has exhibited immense patience since his comeback to the Indian Test side. He has refrained from poking at deliveries outside the off-stump and played close to his body.
“KL Rahul is looking very compact” – Aakash Chopra
KL Rahul has looked the most comfortable amongst all the Indian batters
Aakash Chopra lauded KL Rahul for showing exemplary restraint in Test cricket. He elaborated:
“That’s remarkable for someone who, when he plays T20 cricket, has the ability to hit fours and sixes off every delivery. But he is defending or leaving the same deliveries and he is looking very compact.”
The 44-year-old concluded by saying that KL Rahul seems to have developed a better understanding of his game, much like Rohit Sharma. Chopra observed:
“The biggest change, in my opinion, he has done is to be comfortable in his own skin. Once you understand your game properly, you are not in a hurry because you are very confident. We saw the same thing with Rohit Sharma, if you see his England tour.”
Rahul has amassed 519 runs at a decent average of 43.25 in the six Tests he has played since the start of the England tour. He will hope to play another significant knock at Cape Town and help Team India register a maiden Test series win in South Africa.